The Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) recommends conducting a complete trademark search before applying to register a trademark as a critical step toward successfully securing your brand in Canada.
Check Mark Availability
The purpose of a Canadian trademark search is to determine whether your desired trademark is available. A Google search is not enough to ensure that your trademark has no conflicting trademarks pending or already operating in the market.
Reduce Business Risk
Without doing a Canada trademark search, you open yourself up to the risk of opposition from other businesses with identical or similar trademarks to your own. Not to mention, you risk rejection from a CIPO trademark examiner.
Save Time and Money
You may think skipping a trademark search will save time toward your Canada trademark registration, but the opposite is true. Trademark searches help decrease your chance of costly CIPO office actions, rejection or even time-consuming oppositions from other businesses.
When it comes to Canadian trademark registration, there are no guarantees for approval. That’s why it’s so important to get a trademark search from a Canadian trademark expert who can help you understand the risks and prepare the best possible trademark application for your unique business.
Can I do an online trademark search on my own?
The Canadian Intellectual Property Office has a free online trademark search database available for public use, and it’s an excellent place to start.
The Canadian Trademarks Database can be difficult to navigate, and trademark search results are often hard to interpret on your own. With new trademarks getting published every day, you may also encounter blindspots during system updates. Due to these limitations, a DIY trademark search is insufficient to prepare your business for trademark registration success.
What makes a professional trademark search better?
Quality trademark searches aren’t as simple as Googling your trade name or checking for identical trademarks on the Canadian Trademarks database. A trademark examiner will not stop after exhausting these options — so neither should you. Here’s what a valuable trademark search should address:
It’s not enough to know what goods and services your company provides, you must also know where these items fall under the NICE Classification of Trademarks, the complex system used to determine your scope of business. Most businesses fall under multiple classes, and if you don’t file for each type — your brand won’t be fully protected.
Search for Similar Trademarks
According to section 3.2 of the Trademarks Examination Manual, similar trademarks within the same or related classes have a higher chance of rejection on the grounds of likelihood of confusion. A professional trademark search should identify these risks so you work around them.
Different Types of Trademarks
Since trademark law is not limited to words alone, your trademark search should include different types of trademarks as well, including sound, scent, colour, and more. Plus, you must look out for trademark similarities based on phonetics and spelling variations too.
Beyond Google and the Canadian Trademarks Database, for a complete trademark search you should also conduct a Common Law Trademark Search to reduce the risk of oppositions, office actions and rejection.
Comprehensive Search and Registrability Opinion
A comprehesnsive search by a registered Canadian trademark agent with a registrability opinion will help you to make an informed decision on what’s best for your trademark option and increase your chance of trademark registration.
Even the industry’s best trademark search technology can’t promise perfection, but that doesn’t mean you should forego a search. In fact, a professional trademark search performed by intellectual property experts is the best way to mitigate the risks — and ours is free, so what do you have to lose?
If the results of your Free Trademark SuperSearch™ reveal your mark is too risky, you can upgrade to a more in-depth trademark search package including:
Advanced Trademark Search Report
Enjoy all the service benefits of the Free Trademark SuperSearch™ and get a hard copy of your search results for your records, including: