How do I determine if another mark is too similar to my own?

24 October, 2018

If areas of business overlap, another mark may be too similar to your own if it’s likely to cause customer confusion in the market.

Common reasons for confusion include:

  • EXACT MATCH to a famous mark, regardless whether the areas of business overlap, or to another trademark for a similar product or service. For example, JAGUAR as a trademark for shoes is unlikely to be accepted since JAGUAR is a well-known mark owned by Jaguar Land Rover Limited. Likewise, COPYCAT as a trademark for file backup software is unlikely to be accepted since COPYCAT is already a registered mark for a similar business.
  • SIMILAR SOUND, meaning that a consumer might not receive the correct product when they ask for a brand by name. For example, COPYCAT and KOPYCAT.
  • SIMILAR APPEARANCE, meaning that the marks look similar at a glance. For example, COPYCAT and COPYACT.
  • SIMILAR CONCEPT, meaning that the marks may use different words but convey the same idea. For example, SNEAKY COPYCAT and SLY COPYCAT.