Guide

Trade marks

Introduction

Trade marks are signs that distinguish your products and services from those of other traders. A trade mark may be a distinctive word, phrase, logo, picture, shape, sound, smell or colour, or even a combination of all these elements.

This guide explains what is a trade mark. It tells you how to search for trade marks to ensure that no one else is using the same or similar mark as the one you wish to protect. It also tells you how to register a trade mark in the UK or further afield.

There is no legal requirement to register a trade mark. However, registration can give you legal rights to use your mark, licence or sell it, or to take action against anyone who uses your mark without permission. This guide outlines the necessary steps you should take when protecting registered trade marks.