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BOOK:
INSIDE-OUT
LEGAL

A Book for All Small Business Owners in Alaska

It's much better to manage your legal risks than to let them manage you. That's the Inside-out Legal way. Reading this book gets you started on the right path. Learn about your legal risks and the laws you need to be aware of.

Purchase Book: AMAZON.COM or BARNES & NOBLE

Evaluate

Once you have your search results, you need to deter­mine whether any of the other marks you found would likely cre­ate cus­tomer con­fu­sion between your prod­ucts or ser­vices and their prod­ucts and ser­vices. If con­fu­sion is likely, then you should choose another mark (unless you used the mark first, in which case you’ll need to deal with the other uses as an infringe­ment). If con­fu­sion is unlikely, then you may use the mark.

Unfor­tu­nately, this process is not cut and dried. The like­li­hood of cus­tomer con­fu­sion is one of those mushy legal terms that depend on the facts. If you ask for an opin­ion from an attor­ney, they will likely err on the side of cau­tion. Here are some gen­eral guide­lines in deter­min­ing whether there is a like­li­hood of confusion.

Like­li­hood means that con­fu­sion will more than likely hap­pen; that it’s prob­a­ble. Not that it’s already hap­pened or will hap­pen. The sec­ond fac­tor is con­fu­sion. Will a cus­tomer con­fuse your goods and ser­vices with some­one else’s goods or ser­vices? If Apple, Inc. sells com­put­ers and Apple Hair Prod­ucts sells sham­poos, it’s hard to imag­ine some­one acci­den­tally buy­ing a com­puter when they meant to buy shampoo.

Here are few things to look at: