At Sandiford Tennant we thrive on providing our clients with added value as we understand that IP issues can be complex, so with this in mind we’ve done all the hard work for you and have compiled a jargon free frequently asked questions list, and the best thing is, it’s all in plain English, so you won’t need to be scratching your head or reaching for the nearest dictionary!

DISCLOSURE: The below list if not based on government legislation and relevant law may change from country to country so please contact us for specific country to country advice.

Q. Do I need to register a trade mark before it can be used?

A. No. A mark can be used in an unregistered form, but registration is prima facie proof of ownership of the mark.

Q. What are the benefits of registering a trade mark.

A. A registered mark enables the owner to instigate proceedings for trade mark infringement before the Courts.

Q. How long will it take to obtain registration.

A. Registration of a trade mark in the UK can be obtained within a period of 4-6 months, assuming that no objections are raised to its registration. This period will vary in other countries

Q. What is the period of registration

A. In the majority of countries the period of registration is for 10 years and can be renewed indefinitely at 10 year intervals.

Q. When can we use the letters TM or R symbol ®

A. The letters TM can be used at anytime, unlike the ® which can only be used once a mark has been registered

Q. Will registration give Worldwide protection.

A. No. Registration has to be obtained through the national office of various countries with the exception of a European Community trade mark or a International trade mark filed under the Madrid Protocol System.

Q. What is copyright

A. Copyright protects original works such as, literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, published, sound recordings, films and broadcasts.

Q. How do I obtain copyright registration

A. In the UK, there is no official register for copyright registration as the work will be protected automatically from its creation.