Trade-mark policy

Trade-mark policy establishes the rules across Canada by which trade-mark owners have the exclusive right to use a word, symbol, logo, design or a combination of these, in order to distinguish the goods or services of one person or organization from those of others in the marketplace. Rights begin as soon as the mark is used in the course of trade.

The Trade-marks Act regulates the adoption and use of trade-marks in the marketplace and outlines the procedures for trade-mark registration. Types of trade-marks protected by the Act include certification marks, sound marks and three-dimensional marks. The Trade-marks Act also provides protection for geographical indications, defined as indications identifying a wine or a spirit as having a quality, reputation or other characteristic essentially attributable to its geographical origin.

Amendments to Intellectual Property Laws

The Government of Canada is proposing to make targeted changes to the Trade-marks Act and other related intellectual property laws to discourage certain behaviours that hinder innovation and to enhance clarity in the IP regime, thereby ensuring a more level playing field for all market participants.

Further information

For further information about trade-marks, see:

Trade-mark policy is the responsibility of the Copyright and Trade-mark Policy Directorate, which is part of the Marketplace Framework Policy Branch.