What are the costs factors when founding a GmbH or UG?

Prospective business founders will always want to plan ahead as much as possible for the costs of founding. How much a business costs to found, however, is unique to each business, and dependent on a range of factors. Below we lay out the most major and decisive in...

Model Protocol or Partnership Agreement

Copyright Photo: Cytonn Photography / When you decide to start a GmbH or UG, you need to decide whether to use model protocol or standard establishment with a partnership agreement/articles of association. At Q-found we almost always advise our clients...

What is share capital and what can it be used for?

Copyright Photo: Pixabay / How can you leverage share capital? It is a widespread misconception that a UG/GmbH's share capital must never be used to run a business. This is wrong. In fact, you can leverage share capital in many ways. Some include: Operating...

How does the payment of share capital take place?

Copyright Photo: Engin Akyurt /   Here is our guide to the dos and don'ts of the payment of share capital in Germany. If you're unsure about how you can use your share capital, get in touch with us for some expert advice. If the articles of...

The Future of Online Company Foundation: what does the implementation of EU Directive 2019/1151 mean for founders?

Online company formation is coming The resolution of the "company law package" by the European Parliament brings new possibilities for online company formation. They will roll into Germany by August 2021 at the latest. Importantly for founders from abroad, it will be...

The advantages and disadvantages of the Mini-GmbH – also known as the UG, small GmbH, or 1-Euro-GmbH

Copyright Photo: airdone /   Are you considering just starting small with a Mini-GmbH? Here’s an overview of the factors which might influence your decision. What is a Mini-GmbH? In Germany, an entrepreneurial company with limited liability is...

What to expect when you move to Germany

Copyright Photo: Niki Nagy /   When I moved to Berlin from London six months ago I wasn’t sure what to expect. Here are some things about professional and personal life that I wish I had known before the move to Germany. by Alice Strasburger, Paralegal...

What are articles of association?

Copyright Photo: Pixabay In this article you will learn something about: What are articles of association? Significance of articles of association Minimum components - The following information must contain the articles of association. Additional regulation options -...

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Trademark applications

When you start a business, the feeling of excitement when you know you’ve found the right name is often one of the most exhilarating moments.

However, the path from an innovative idea to an officially registered trademark can be difficult. We have laid out the most important aspects below so that you can have a clear idea of what’s in store.

What is a trademark application anyway?

Trademarks exist largely for two reasons, or perhaps one, which is two sides of the same coin. The first is so that you can be confident that your name and logo are unique. The second is so that no one can imitate you. In order to achieve that confidence, you need to register at the Trademark Office.

When filing a trademark application at the German Patent and Trademark Office (DPMA), you can get legal protection for your name, slogan or logo, preventing anyone else from using similar ones. The flipside if that if anything you wish trademark already exists, then you will need to think of something else!

What does the term “trademark” cover?

First and foremost, the trademark is the name of the product. It can be protected in various ways: Words, i.e. slogans, product names or company names are protected as ‘word marks’, logos as ‘figurative marks’ (or design marks), and a combination of text and image as ‘word/figurative marks’.

Does this mean that I have to find a trademark for my product that does not yet exist anywhere?

In order to register is Germany, you do not need to think of something that is globally unique; it only needs to be unique within your industry in Germany or the EU. Existing brand names from abroad, or from another industry, can be used, provided there is no danger of confusion.

Conversely, this means that you must ensure that your trademark is not already in use and that there is no danger of confusion with another trademark.

How do I find out whether I can use my trademark without any problems?

Each registered trademark is protected for a certain number of goods and services which are delineated by the Nice Classification, which divides them into different classes.  You can select the appropriate ones within which you will be protected. You should weigh up the costs and benefits of each choice, as the basic fee of € 300.00 at the DPMA includes only three classes and an additional € 100.00 is charged for each additional class.

When drawing up this list, you need to make sure you achieve the right balance. On one hand you want to make sure that you can protect yourself in the classes you have selected, on the other, you need to make sure the the scope of protection is not too narrow, otherwise other entrepreneurs might use your trade mark for a similar product.

What else has to be considered?

A trademark search goes hand in hand with the creation of a secure list of goods and services: you must find out whether there is an identical or similar trademark that could threaten yours. If so, the the pre-existing trademark could request cancellation of yours trademark, since in the case of a collision the older trademark always takes precedence over the new one.

The registrability of your trademark is examined ex officio and may lead to the failure of your application, so you should ensure in advance that your trademark is registrable per se.

How can we help you now?

A professional trademark search by a lawyer will greatly reduce the chances of a clash with pre-existing trademarks. We can do this for you, and make sure that your application is well-prepared, registered without any problems, and a strong insurance against potential future imitators.

Protect your brand by registering it at the trademark register.