Is Registering a .COM Domain Name Enough to Secure Trademark Rights?

So you registered your .COM domain name.

Does it mean you can now claim that you have a common-law trademark?

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The answer to that question is, NO.

The mere fact of registering a domain name does nothing to protect your brand that you reflect in that domain name.

Unregistered trademark rights do exist and are recognized in some countries (and we have a separate video on that). Canada recognizes unregistered trademarks, U.S. recognizes unregistered trademarks, some other countries recognize unregistered trademarks. But unregistered trademarks require that you use you brand extensively and that a substantial number of people know about your brand.

So when you’ve just come up with a name and registered a domain name, it means nothing in terms of you being able to protect the brand.

All it does is, it will stop others from being able to register the same domain name as you for technical reasons, but you get absolutely no trademark rights.

So you will be able to protect the brand name if you build the website, are using that domain name, and that website is well visited so you can prove that you have customers from all over the world and they know you under that brand. But the fact that you’ve just registered it by itself means nothing.

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Disclaimer: Please note that this post and this video are not and are not intended as legal advice. Your situation may be different from the facts assumed in this post or video. Your reading this post or watching this video does not create a lawyer-client relationship between you and Trademark Factory International Inc., and you should not rely on this post or this video as the only source of information to make important decisions about your intellectual property.

See our answers to other frequently asked questions about trademarks or leave your comments below!

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