Trade Mark Infringement
What is a Trade Mark?
A Trade Mark is anything that signifies and distinguishes a trader’s goods or services from other traders. This can be anything significant enough to be called a sign of differentiation, including letters, words, names, numbers, signatures, brands, labels, packaging shapes and sizes, colours, sounds, scents and more. Some Trade Marks are easier to protect than others, however, this all depends on the circumstances surrounding the infringement. With correct registration and legal foundation, a Trade Mark can ensure its owner has exclusive legal right to use, create with, and authorise others to use it.
I’ve Received A Letter from A Lawyer Claiming I Have Infringed A Trade Mark. What Should I Do?
Receiving a letter of demand from a lawyer can be extremely daunting. Your best course of action is not to panic and contact us immediately. Sometimes the claim may have merit, other times it may be completely frivolous and unjustified. Regardless of the situation, we can create intelligent strategic options that help you respond in the best way possible. We aim to achieve a fast and cost-effective resolution so you can get back to business. If a short time frame has been provided for you to respond, we can request further time to ensure you are fully advised. There are costs penalties which can be applied to litigants (and their lawyers) if legal proceedings are commenced too quickly before the other side has had a chance to be advised or respond.
Am I Allowed to Parallel Import Trade Marked Products into Australia?
There are provisions in s123 of the Trade Marks Act which permit the sale and distribution of parallel imported (or grey) products into Australia (for instance, products made by the Trade Mark owner for a foreign market which are brought into Australia). However, the position on parallel imports has been muddied by the Full Federal Court decision in the Paul’s Warehouse case. Therefore if you are planning on bringing in parallel imported products into Australia, we recommend you obtain legal advice before doing so.