How do I know if my mark can be used in Canada?

"You name it!"

Although there is no way to be absolutely sure that your trade-mark can be used in Canada without objection from someone else, there are steps that can be taken to try to discover potential problems if they exist.

One place to look is at the Canadian Trade-marks Office records. These records include information on registered trade-marks as well as pending trade-mark applications. These records are often several weeks out of date, so it is possible that a search will not disclose a recently filed application.

Another place to look is in the marketplace to see what competitors are doing.

Numerous reference sources can be consulted including trade directories and telephone books.

A database search called a NUANS search can be done to determine the names of federal companies, companies incorporated in some provinces and some business name listings, to avoid possible conflict.

Even if careful searching is done, it is always possible that someone else is using a similar or even the same mark in some localized area in Canada. Extensive searching can reduce such potential problems.