Trademark availability search is one of the essential prior steps to the filing and use of your trademark.
Simply filing or registering your trademark with an Office does not guarantee you a peaceful exploitation of it. Only a verification of existing prior rights will allow ensuring that you are not infringing another trademark.
Why is it necessary to call on an Intellectual Property Attorney to carry out a clearance trademark search?
Firstly, because the Intellectual property Attorney is a professional who is trained in this practice. Just as you rely on a specialist doctor to analyse medical examinations, it is logical to rely on an IP attorney to analyse the chances of success of your project.
Secondly, because the Intellectual property attorney has access to comprehensive and exhaustive databases with detailed listings of trademarks.
He/she will select the relevant trademarks, identical or similar to your project, depending on the current case-law in matters of trademarks.
Your IP attorney will also mention practical information regarding the use of the trademark and the activity of its holder.
He/she will provide you with a conclusion and practical recommendations on continuing the project.
The IP attorneys of BRANDON IP specialising in Trademarks have more than 15 years of experience in their job and handle these questions daily. They are also regularly trained and keep themselves up to date on the latest case-laws.
A few examples:
- I wish to develop an activity of software creation under the name POMME. It this possible vis-à-vis the APPLE trademarks?
- We wish to sell cosmetic products using the sign VIVERE. Should we secure a prior trademark LIBERE?
What you might be able to do by yourself:
For the initial selection of names, you can check whether this name has been filed by a third party for your activity on the online databases of the Offices, especially the French Office (INPI).
A search on a search engine such as Google will also allow you to identify potential competitors using this name.
This is not a trademark availability search but only an initial verification in order to refine your choice of names.
Note that: Certain Offices offer services called “trademark availability searches”. This is simply a listing of trademarks, without any details on the targeted activities, and especially without a legal analysis. Hence, this document is of no use.