What is a trademark?

A trademark is a brand name, symbol and/or logo that is used to distinguish a business and their goods or services. A trademark is legally registered and can forbid other parties from trading with it.

A trademark could include one or more of the following:

- A letter

- Word

- Phrase

- Shape

- Sound

- Logo

- Picture

- aspect of packaging or;

- combination of the above

Steps to trademarking your business name

You may wish to take advice from a trademark attorney or solicitor before applying to register your business name as a trademark. This is to ensure you get the best possible protection for your brand.

If you decide to go it alone (like many small businesses do), then the steps are as follows:

1. Search your desired trademark to make sure it is available. This is a free service to use.

2. Identify what description of goods or services you would like to fall under

3. Apply for your trademark - this can generally take three or four months once everything has been submitted.

4. Pay your application fee.

5. Wait patiently for your approval to be accepted - you will be notified in writing

6. Once approved you will need to wait approx. two months to make sure there are no oppositions or reasons to revoke.

7. Your trademark will be registered.

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