There is always a risk in concluding a brand co-existence agreement. Perhaps in the future you would like to expand into new territories and markets and you will find limited by an agreement that you signed many years ago. A co-existence agreement may also restrict your right to transfer your trademark or your ability to enforce it. Finally, if the other company produces poor quality products or offers insufficient service, your own reputation could suffer. A party that is clearly a disciple brand user (not the first party to use a trademark) may have no choice but to seek an acceptance agreement from the older user of the mark (the first party that usually uses and registers a trademark in the trade). However, if the bargaining power between the parties is more regular, a co-existence agreement detailing the issues important to both parties is probably in the interest of all. The bargaining power for the use of the trademark can be created by the status of an older user, by a known or known brand, or by the ownership of additional trademarks that the other party may be interested in limiting. A trademark agreement is usually a simple contract by which a party agrees to authorize the use and/or registration of a trademark that overlaps with another party. The parties also state that their brands are not confusing to consumers.

Often, this type of agreement is used when a company has received or is anticipating a refusal to register by the USPTO (U.S. Patent and Trademark Office). A brand co-existence agreement is a legal contract linking the signatories under certain conditions. It will limit the use (and often where) of a brand and influence how goods or services can be marketed. Here`s what you need to keep in mind when negotiating with another company that uses a similar brand. To submit a co-existence agreement to the USPTO, an applicant (the party requesting trademark registration) must meet one of the following USPTO criteria for “simultaneous use”: the process of selecting a trademark must be carried out with caution and foresight, by conducting as complete a search as possible, preferably with the assistance of a specialist. If, despite these efforts, a conflict with the same or similar brand in the market is created, then a co-existence agreement may be less costly than a legal confrontation. This is not to say that it is always better to capitulate and accept a coexistence in the face of litigation, but in some situations, litigation may be the only appropriate response. It is up to the trademark holders to assess, in all cases, what would be appropriate given their particular circumstances. Companies should also be aware of competition and cartel rules: courts may find that their brands of similar products, which are confusingly congruent, are harming competition in the market.