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Business Startups: Proving Trademark Infringement in California

Angeles Trademark Lawyer

Business Startups: Proving Trademark Infringement in California

There are a few steps a trademark owner can take once discovered a competitor or a competitor offering similar goods or services uses a mark, such as a company logo, that is substantially similar to your trademark or service mark.

Trademark infringement is the unauthorized use of a trademark or service mark. A mark that is substantially similar to your trademark may also be considered a trademark infringement. A trademark owner who believes its trade market or service mark is being infringed may file a civil action for trademark infringement. Generally, a trademark owner must present evidence that the similarities of the trademark or service mark can cause a likelihood of confusion to the average consumer. Specific factors are considered and weighted when courts determine the likelihood of confusion thus each trademark infringement action varies from case to case.

Supporting a Trademark Infringement Acton:

Trademark owner must prove:

  • It owns a valid mark
  • The mark has been properly registered with the USPTO;
  • It has priority;
  • The use of the mark or the similarities of the mark is likely to cause confusion to the average consumers.

It is a good idea to speak with a trademark or intellectual property attorney to gain a better understanding of your rights and remedies. A California trademark attorney can help explain the process and evaluate whether or not you have a solid case. If you are unable to hire or consult with an attorney, there are also a few immediate steps you may take if you discovered that there has been a trademark infringement:

Documenting Trademark Infringement:

  • Gather any and all relevant or valuable information you can about the third-party;

  • Try reaching out to the company or person who is using your trademark;

  • Gather evidence, photos, and other types of evidence;

  • Document and make copies of correspondence or letters exchanged between yourself and the third-party.

Trademark Cease and Desist Letter:

Absent of legal representation, you can also write a letter to the company or person requesting to stop the use of trademark activity. A cease and desist letter may cover a number of issues, including but not limited to:

  • A description of trademark owner’s rights;

  • Write a brief description of the infringing activity;

  • A request to the company to stop all current and future infringing activity;

  • Advise the company what will result or the consequences that may occur if they fail to stop infringing activity.

What Happens if the Third-Party Failed to Stop Infringing Activity After I Sent Trademark Cease and Desist Letter?

If the infringing third party failed to cease and desist infringing activity, at this point it is recommended that you hire an intellectual property or Los Angeles business lawyer that specializes in trademark infringement in order to take appropriate legal action to protect your proprietary rights.

Unauthorized Use of Your Trademark on a Website:

  • Document the name of the website;

  • Document the web address;

  • Document the type of industry the company is working in, if possible;

  • Document the date and time you discovered that the third-party used your trademark;

  • Take screen grabs every time you see it on the use website;

  • Document the provided address or contact information as declared on the website.

E-commerce Website Selling Products Using Your Trademark without Your or Company Authorization:

  • Document the date and time you discovered that the third-party used your trademark;

  • Document the name of the website;

  • Document the web address;

  • Document the type of industry the company is working in, if possible;

  • Document the kind of products the company is selling;

  • Take screen grabs every time you see it on the use website;

  • Take screen grabs of the products the company is selling;

  • Document the price of the products;

  • Document e address or contact information as declared on the website.

Company Offering a Service Using Your Trademark without Your or Company Authorization:

  • Document the date and time you discovered that the third-party used your trademark;

  • Document the name of the website;

  • Document the web address;

  • Document the kind of service or services the company is offering;

  • Take screen grabs every time you see it on the use website;

  • Document the price for their service, if available;

  • Document the address or contact information as declared on the website.

Tech Company Developing Apps Using Your Trademark without Your Authorization:

  • Document the date and time you discovered that the third-party used your trademark;

  • Document the name of the company or app;

  • Document the information found on the company’s app store and or google play account;

  • Take screen grabs of the app on app store or google play account;

  • Document the address or contact information on the website or app store;

  • Do some research on the web!  the company selling the app has a website;

    • If website available: follow the steps listed in the E-commerce website selling products using your trademark without your authorization;

    • If website is unavailable do some research on the internet.

Hire a Trademark or Intellectual Property Lawyer:

  • Seek advice from a IP lawyer specializing in trademark infringement;

  • An attorney may help in recovering money damages from the third-party that used your trademark or intellectual property outside of court or;

  • May even file a lawsuit against the third-party for trademark infringement.


KAASS LAW is authorized to practice law in California. The above content is intended for California residents only. This content provides only general information which may or may not reflect current legal developments. KAASS LAW expressly disclaims all liability in respect to actions taken or not taken based on any of the contents of this website. The above content DOES NOT create an attorney-client relationship. KAASS LAW does not represent you unless you have expressly retained KAASS LAW in person at the KAASS LAW office.

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