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Trademark Infringement

Trademark infringement is an infringement of exclusive rights attaching to a trademark without the authorization of the trademark owner or any licensee. Trademark infringement typically occurs when a person uses a trademark which may be either a symbol or a design, with resembles to the products owned by the other party. The trademark owner may begin an officially permitted proceeding against a party, which infringes its registration. There are two types of remedies are available to the owner of a trademark for unauthorized use of its imitation by a third party. These remedies are an action for passing off in the case of an unregistered trademark and an action for infringement in case of a registered trademark. An infringement action and an action for passing off are quite different from each other, an infringement action is a statutory remedy and an action for passing off is a common law remedy.

Accordingly, in order to ascertain infringement with regard to a registered trademark, it is necessary only to establish that the infringing mark is deceptively similar to the registered mark and no further proof is required. In the case of a passing off action, proving that the marks are deceptively similar alone is not sufficient. The use of the mark should be likely to deceive confusion. Further, in a passing off action it is necessary to prove that the use of the trademark by the defendant is likely to cause injury to the plaintiff's goodwill, whereas in an infringement suit, the use of the mark by the defendant need not cause any injury to the plaintiff. Trademark infringement laws are of assistance the trademark holders to keep awareness about infringement of trademark.