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Rebranding your company necessitates a slew of legal issues. Discover things to remember when your branding evolves.

What you’ll discover:

Should I modify my current brand, add a DBA, or change it entirely?
Is it worthwhile to go through the trouble of changing my company’s name?
What should I do with my trademark portfolio?
How can I safeguard my new brand?
How can I safeguard my internet reputation?

You may choose to rebrand or rename your company for a variety of reasons as a business owner. It takes time, effort, and money to do so. When you begin the paperwork to establish a new brand, you must first complete your research. There may be more to it than you think, from trademark registration to company name changing restrictions.

Should I modify my current brand, add a DBA, or change it entirely?

You have alternatives when it comes to rebranding your company. To determine if you should adjust your current brand, add a “Doing Business As” (DBA), or replace it entirely, consider your rebranding objectives.

Making minor changes to your current branding may not need as much documentation. This might be as simple as changing the typeface on your logo, creating a new motto, or completely redesigning your website or shop. Remember that you may need to update or get new trademarks.

If your company requires a broader adjustment, registering a DBA name may help. A DBA is a name that a company uses in contacts with the public that is distinct from the legal name of the corporation. If your company already has trademarks registered, contracts signed, a huge following, or substantial assets under its legal name, registering a DBA with the relevant state or local government organization may make more sense. Before proceeding, ensure that the DBA name is not already associated with another organization or brand. Most states provide a searchable internet directory where you may look for company names.

The most comprehensive solution is to formally alter the name of your company. To alter the name of your company, you must submit an Articles of Amendment with your state’s secretary of state. If you are registered in more than one state, you may need to submit an Articles of Amendment in each state. Once accepted, your company may legally alter its name. But, you may need to take a few more actions before your company may function under its new legal name.

Is it worthwhile to go through the trouble of changing my company’s name?

If you’re on the fence about altering your company’s name or rebranding, think about the projected return on investment. Ask:

What will the company benefit by changing its name?

How long will it take to complete?
What will it cost?

It could be a good idea to do some market research to see how your clients will react to the new name or branding.

After registering a DBA or submitting Articles of Amendment and receiving state approval for the new name, you may need to:

Alter the name on your bank accounts or establish new ones.
City, municipal, and county governments provide transfer licenses and permits.
Inform the IRS of the name change and discover if your company need a new Employer Identification Number (EIN).
For current contracts, review contracts and notify customers and suppliers of the name change.

By just altering the company name by revising the original organizational paperwork, a new EIN may not be necessary. You may alter your company name by forming a new business entity for your new brand. Nevertheless, doing so will very certainly need reassigning your contracts to the new business, selling or transferring assets, acquiring a new EIN, and other steps.

What should I do with my trademark portfolio?

Some firms are obsessed with branding and may develop a sizable portfolio of trademarks and copyrights. A well-managed trademark portfolio requires attention to detail and effort.

Begin by listing all of the existing trademarks in your portfolio. Then, you may wish to keep a record of the different design codes for your trademarks. A design code is a six-digit number that is used in trademarks to categorize and search for design components. These codes are recorded in a government database and may assist you in identifying other trademarks that are confusingly similar to yours.

Since trademarks expire, it is important to maintain track of their expiry dates and keep up with renewals. You never know when a licensing opportunity for your brand may come, so it is essential to be prepared. In addition, if you register new trademarks, be sure to include them in your trademark portfolio management system.

How can I safeguard my new brand?

A registered trademark provides considerable brand and company protection. To register and trademark your brand name with the USPTO, you must submit an application that consists of ten components. After completing the online application, you must submit it with TEAS Plus or TEAS Standard and pay the applicable costs. After a trademark is granted, it is deemed registered and becomes valid for as long as you use it and can demonstrate to the USPTO that you have been using it. You acquire greater rights to use and defend your brand’s trademarks by registering them.

Keep a watch out for trademark infringement once you’ve registered your trademarks. Examine the competitive environment for any firms that have a logo or brand that is strikingly similar to yours. Trademark infringement is decided by the courts on a case-by-case basis. The resemblance of the trademarks and whether the firms are rivals are often the most relevant considerations. If you suspect another company is using your trademark or one that is confusingly similar to yours, you should begin with a Cease and Desist Letter.

How can I safeguard my internet reputation?

An effective collection of digital assets is the key to a great online presence for your business. But, protecting your online brand and digital assets requires forethought and patience.

Registering your trademarks and copyrights might help you regain social media profiles wearing your company’s name or logo that you did not establish. Social networking website owners will normally delete information from their platforms after receiving a well-documented legal notification of a trademark or copyright infringement.

If you discover that others are utilizing your digital assets, you will have more legal options to stop them if they are properly registered. Since this area of law may be intricate, you should consult with a lawyer to determine your best course of action.

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