Our intellectual property specialists have helped a startup technology company to prevent a rival business from registering a trade mark that was very similar to our client's name.
Our client, a software company which launched an app for users to find spare rooms in their local area, found that a direct rival of theirs had filed an application to register a similar name for a similar technology.
Fortunately, our client had already secured its own trade mark using the free assistance provided by ipo.gov.uk – the Intellectual Property Office. However, they realised they would need legal advice to make an effective challenge to their rival’s application.
Our client approached a traditional law firm for assistance first, but discovered they couldn’t afford the legal fees as a startup business without much working capital.
The tech business then approached us and explained the situation with their rivals and their own trade mark application.
How Harper James Helped
We explained our fees and the way we work and were then able to provide them with cost-effective and expert legal support.
One of our intellectual property solicitors, Lindsay Gledhill, advised and assisted in preparing a witness statement on their behalf to challenge their rival’s application.
On completion of the work, Lindsay said: “Our client took advantage of the free guidance available at ipo.gov.uk to file their own trade mark. They then recognised they required detailed legal advice to deal with the rival's challenge and they shopped around for a cost-effective legal service.
“Running a business is all about prioritising risk. There’s a risk to filing a trade mark application without legal involvement, but CEOs tell us again and again that there's also a risk of spending too much of your limited funds on legal services at the outset. Sometimes building the business has to come first.
“Here, our client made the right call at the right time and we succeeded as a team.
“What an experienced lawyer should offer their clients is advice about how to prioritise legal spend at the different stages of the business' lifecycle – and that advice should be justifiable to the board and to experienced investors.”