Trademark Law

What's In a Name? Big Legal Fees for Small Cos. That Don't Do Due Diligence

A small entrepreneur may not give much thought, before starting a small business, to legal issues concerning its name.

But selecting one that’s already in use, or even too similar to another company’s moniker, can be costly. Defending a trademark case can easily cost tens of thousands of dollars. Avoiding the issue to begin with might simply require registering with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, which will can let a business know if someone else is already using the same name, reports the Wall Street Journal.

For those who take a chance and use a name that steps on another company’s toes, it’s likely that the similarity will be noticed sooner or later, says licensing and trademark attorney Anuj Desai of Arnall Golden Gregory in Atlanta. “A lot of big businesses have people who are assigned to find people who are using their trademark.”

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