Yes you can unless there is proper policing done, you are highly likely to lose your trademark rights. In my previous article I had mentioned how getting your mark registered is just the first step to the long battle ahead because even if your trademark is approved, people can challenge and steal your trademark and can do so by legal means. It sure does sound oxymoronic; how can one “legally” steal something, but if you read on you’ll know exactly what I mean. So to put this in perspective, here are some of the ways in which someone else could actually do that;
Filing an application or obtaining a registration is only the first step to the long battle ahead; because once the mark has been registered, the owner has to be more vigilant in protecting it in this era of “passing off”. Here’s the thing, if you come across your mark which someone else is using, then don’t let it go by because if you don’t take an action soon you will not be able to act on it ever unless you are lucky enough to prove fraudulent usage on part of the other person. This post aims to decode the concept of acquiescence with respect to trademark infringement with the help of the judicial opinions in this matter.
In Utopia, I believe competition among similar businesses would be healthy and fair. However, in the real world, the Darwinian principle of survival of the fittest applies. We find that some wonderful businesses, with unique and sometimes well-established brands, end up in shambles because their owners did not take the right steps at the right time to protect those brands. So, the proverbial cheats prospered, right? Not really. Everything boils down to what someone rightly said “If you don’t know your rights, you have no rights.”
We are a boutique intellectual property law firm based out of India, assisting clients ranging from early-stage start-ups to Fortune 500 companies across several industries in protecting intellectual property across the globe.