A business name registration or corporation registration does not give you registered trademark rights in your business name.
Learn more about the differences between Trademark Registration, Corporation Registration and Business Name Registration.
Registering a Corporation
Once you have registered your corporation name at the Ontario and/or Federal level, no other person/company can register a corporation name that is identical to yours (some exceptions apply).
However, this doesn't stop or prevent someone from obtaining a corporation registration for a name that is similar to your name, for example by adding or deleting words, numbers or letters to make their name slightly different to yours.
As well, a registered Ontario corporation does not prevent another company from registering the same/identical corporation name in another province.
Business Name Registration (Ontario)
Typically you register your business name if you are a sole proprietorship, have a partnership or if your operating business name is different from your corporation name.
Registering your business name in Ontario does not give you exclusive rights to the name. Particularly, it is possible for someone else to register the identical name under The Business Names Act.
If you want to protect your business name and prevent others from using the same name or one similar, then you should register your business name as a trademark.
Trademark Registration is the mechanism that gives you exclusive rights across Canada to use the trademark for 10 years (updated June 2019) & this term is renewable.
Given that your trademark becomes intrinsically tied to your business and it's reputation, a registered trademark is a valuable business asset. As well, if you expand your business to another area or city, a registered trademark is proof of your rights to the name in this new location as registered trademark rights extend throughout Canada.
Protect your business, contact Sander Law to register your trademark today!
The above content is for informational purposes only and is not legal or professional advice.