Domain Names, Trademark Infringement, and Commercial Litigation
When it comes to guarding against trademark and copyright infringement claims, one of the smartest things you can do is to work with an experienced business litigation firm to protect your domain name. You might be surprised at how many companies—even nonprofit corporations—find out that competitors are out in the market using their name or one that is alarmingly similar. Not only can this cause your company to lose ground, but it can misdirect your customers to the competitor.
This can happen—and result in costly, sometimes risky litigation, or having to change your company’s name—all because the proper legal rules were not followed during the company’s initial formation.
Intellectual Property & Selecting a Domain Name
Under intellectual property principles, the general rule is that the more unique your company name, the greater protection you can typically gain under the law. Thus, one of the paths that you and your attorney will initially cross is carefully selecting this name and avoiding generic, non-descript names that involve any variations of the same common terms. This way, competitors using a particular variation or term that is a threat to your business is less likely to become an issue down the road.
Company names which are arbitrary, fanciful, or suggestive in comparison to the goods or services that they are connected—while also being distinct and unique—are typically entitled to greater protection under the law. It is always a good rule of thumb to avoid easily misspelled, hyphenated, and/or lengthy names.
It is also crucial that you not only do a basic search online to make sure that another business doesn’t already have that name, but check to see if anyone has registered the name as a trademark.
Registering Your Domain Name as a Mark
Registering your domain name is a little more complicated. Because most users resort to the .com top level domain, registering the .com domain version as an alternative landing site and redirecting that traffic to your main site is wise. Any alternative domain names that could result from misspellings or typos should also be registered in order to prevent your customers from being incorrectly misdirected.
Registering your company and domain name as a protected trademark or service mark is a crucial step that your attorney will assist you with so that the research and registration is done as thoroughly as possible. This step is absolutely crucial in ensuring that you are protected down the road.
Texas Commercial Litigation and Copyright Infringement Attorneys
Working with a commercial litigation attorney early on in the process of business formation can help prevent business disputes. Still, sometimes they are inevitable, and litigation may be the only path to resolution.
The attorneys at Colvin, Saenz, Rodriguez & Kennamer, L.L.P. have been providing commercial litigation expertise to businesses in Brownsville, Texas and surrounding areas for more than 60 years. Contact us today to find out more about business formation, as well t what guidance we can provide to you and your business now to avoid hassles later.