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On trademarks and protecting yours from infringement

Imagine that you own a company. You've done your due diligence and have created an iconic logo and name, and you think that the products you sell and services you offer will synergize nicely with the overall look of your company. You open the doors and your company is almost immediately successful. You've really got something here!

But shortly after you open, you realize there is another company that has a very similar look and name to your company. That's when it dawns on you: you never trademarked your company name and logo, and now there is an identity problem that you have to deal with.

This is why trademarks are so important. They prevent customer confusion and they allow you to hone in on your identity and your role in the marketplace. Without trademarks, any company would just try to mimic or outright plagiarize another company's identity.

If you have a trademark for your company, you should make sure to protect that trademark. One of the ways to do this is to actively use your trademark. This means applying the "TM" to your company name and/or logo. You can also apply legal pressure on companies that try to use your logo or branding.

Trademarks are critical components of business and intellectual property law. Properly applying and obtaining a trademark is just the first step. You also have to properly use a trademark and then enforcement the trademark if other companies try to violate or infringe upon your legal protection.

Source: FindLaw, "Protect Your Trademark from Infringement," Accessed Nov. 25, 2016

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