Grand Blanc, MI asked in Trademark for Michigan

Q: If a company trademarks a generic word, such as GLADIATOR, how am I restricted from using it?

For instance Jeep has a GLADIATOR model and there is a movie named GLADIATOR. I make laser acrylic emblems for various vehicles. Am I not allowed to make an emblem that says GLADIATOR at all? Or just using the font/logo that they use? Other examples would be Jeeps CHEROKEE and Ford's MUSTANG. These are general words that existed before their brands.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Erik Špila
Erik Špila
  • Trademarks Lawyer
  • Senec, Slovakia

A: Answer to your question depends on more variables so we can not provide comprehensive question to your pertinent question here. However, trademark is mostly only protected in a territory in which it is registered and valid, and for goods or services that it has listed in the trademark registration. So even though someone has GLADIATOR word trademark for cars in for instance European Union, someone else may have GLADIATOR word trademark for toothbrushes and they can coexist together without any trademark infringment. This is a general answer but you can post me more details if you want the answer for specific question as the result and advice may differ depending on case specifics.

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