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Trademark infringement: Severe penalties for a serious issue

Your company's trademarks are the way that people can spot your company from afar. You need to protect these trademarks throughout your company's time in business. If you have a registered trademark, other businesses have to respect that trademark. They can face legal action against them if they infringe upon that trademark.

While it is possible to file trademark infringement actions in state court or federal court, most businesses opt to pursue these claims on a federal level. These actions must be taken very seriously because of the severity of the impacts.

When the court finds that there is trademark infringement, it can order that the defendant pay the complainant's attorney fees. It can also order monetary compensation, forfeiture of the infringing items and other similar penalties. The court will also order that the trademark not be used again by the defendant.

These cases are often very complex, so determining the best way to protect your trademark is necessary. You need to take action quickly because your company might suffer even more financial damages the longer the infringement continues.

One of the primary things that you need to show in your case is that consumers were likely confused by the infringement. The similarities of your trademark and the logo used by the defendant would be one of the factors that you could include here.

Putting together your case is something that you need to think carefully about. Your information needs to be clear, concise and presented in an effective manner. Determining how to do this can be a challenge, but it isn't impossible.

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office, "About Trademark Infringement," accessed Jan. 26, 2018

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