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What can i do if someone is has a very similar, almost the same brand name to mine? I have it trademarked and they don't.

Van Nuys, CA |

I recently found a brand that has a very similar name, almost the same as my company and provides the same goods as mine. I have already trademarked my company name and this other brand is NOT trademarked. what actions can i take?

Attorney Answers 7

  1. In order to protect the value of your trademark, you should hire a lawyer and send a letter demanding that the other company stop using the similar mark because it is confusing. There are many factors consider when evaluating the potential for confusion. For example, if the other company started using their mark first (before your use started), regardless of registration, that company might have some common-law trademark rights in the name.

    This comment is NOT LEGAL ADVICE and is posted for informational purposes only. I am not your attorney; you are not my client. Both you and any other person reading this comment SHOULD NOT RELY UPON this comment. Regardless of the information provided in this comment, any reader of this comment should CONSULT AN ATTORNEY to get the legal advice you are seeking.

  2. You have an options that you can take which include sending a cease-and-desist letter to the other company and filing a lawsuit against the other company for trademark infringement.

    What you should do is meet with a trademark attorney and discuss your situation in private with the attorney. The attorney will be able to give you an idea as to whether the courts would find a likelihood of confusion between the two marks. In addition, the attorney will be able to do the research to determine who used its mark first and therefore has priority to use.

    Registering a trademark with the USPTO (which is what I am assuming you mean by 'trademarked') only prevents others from adopting marks within the U.S that present a likelihood of confusion after registration of the mark. Companies already using a mark that presents a likelihood of confusion may continue to use their marks in the geographical areas where the companies were using the mark prior to registration.

    Answering of your question is merely general advice and does not constitute legal advice. None of the statements or implications made by this answer creates an attorney-client relationship with the attorney answering the question. The statements made in this answer are not to be solely relied upon and you should meet with a competent attorney to discuss any concerns you may have regarding this answer.

  3. You can have an attorney send a cease and desist letter.

  4. With your other posting, five very good answers.
    Good luck.

    The above is general legal and business analysis. It is not "legal advice" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyse this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. I am only licensed in California. See also terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.

  5. Before jumping to a cease and desist letter, you may want to look into whether the other company has prior rights in the brand. An attorney can help you with this analysis.

  6. I agree with attorney Weiner. If the other company was using the mark prior to your own use of the mark (or before you filed a Sec. 1(b), intent-to-use application for the mark), they, not
    you, may have superior rights, even if you have registered the mark and they haven't.

  7. There is only one action you can prudently take. See a trademark litigation attorney immediately. Do not try to play amateur lawyer or you may be headed for an expensive lesson in trademark litigation strategy.

    I am not your lawyer and you are not my client. Free advice here is without recourse and any reliance thereupon is at your sole risk. This is done without compensation as a free public service. I am licensed in IL, MO, TX and I am a Reg. Pat. Atty. so advice in any other jurisdiction is strictly general advice and should be confirmed with an attorney licensed in that jurisdiction.

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