My trademark has design elements, how many applications should I file?

The number of trademark applications you should file depends on the characteristics of your mark, your budget, and the level of protection you want to have in Canada.

If your trademark includes distinct textual elements and design elements (graphics or logos), and you want both aspects to be protected, we recommend filing two trademark applications: one for the textual elements only (filed as a "Word Mark") and another for the combined design and text elements (filed as a "Combined Mark").

Filing two trademark applications has several advantages:

  1. Broader and stronger protection: If a third party files a "Combined Mark" with text similar to yours but a different design, their mark could still be accepted for registration if you only filed a "Combined Mark" and not a "Word Mark." This is because the third party's mark, as a whole, is considered different from yours.

  2. Protection for logo evolution: Companies often update their logos over time. If you only file a "Combined Mark" and not a "Word Mark," your new logo won't be protected. You must use your trademark exactly as registered; otherwise, it may be subject to cancellation.

  3. Comprehensive verbal and graphic protection: Filing a "Word Mark" application offers greater flexibility in using your mark in various ways, such as stylized text or different designs (as long as they aren't too similar to registered trademarks owned by third parties). Simultaneously, filing a "Combined Mark" protects your mark's design elements.

If your trademark also includes a slogan or a unique design symbol, we suggest filing separate applications for each to provide additional protection.

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