Protection of the trademark in Ukraine

Let’s dwell upon the ways of trademark protection in Ukraine.

Under Civil Code of Ukraine, trademark is any designation or combination of signs that distinguish the goods (services) from other goods (services).

Usually trademark is a “face” of the company and a key for success in business. Undoubtedly, everybody knows what “Apple” or “Google” are. But at the same time the trademark needs to be protected from unfair competitors.

The first recommendation is to register your trademark and all your copyrights, because only when being an authorized owner you are able to control the use of your intellectual property and forbid the third persons to use it.

Methods of the trademark protection

1)      When the trademark owner founds a violation of his legitimate rights to the trademark it is recommended to start solving the case without public authorities. One should send a letter with a warning that violation of your rights causes legal responsibility. Start negotiating, in many cases it is an effective method. Such peaceful way is suitable in cases when the violator hasn’t caused sufficient damages yet.

2)      If negotiating doesn’t help, start claiming to the public authorities. If the violator’s actions are considered an unfair competition, one can apply to the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine. This state body is empowered to:

–          Involve officers of law enforcement bodies, customs, tax and other authorities to start investigation;

–          Put a fine upon the violator;

–          Cease the goods made under your trademark.

3)      Another method, if two previous cannot be applicable or were ineffective, is taking a matter to court. Current legislation provides the following ways of the claimant rights protection, for example:

–          Compensation of financial losses and other material damage;

–          Compensation of moral damages;

–          Destroying of the goods produced with the illegal use of the trademark;

–          The establishment of an exclusive right to the trademark, etc .

4)      The strictest type  of legal responsibility is a criminal one. But it takes place only if the violator acts repeatedly and causes large material damages. The penalty is represented by a fine, confiscation of the property or imprisonment.

But please remember, the secret of successful case is to have evidence. That’s why don’t hesitate with the trademark registration so that you have documentary confirmation of your rights.