A company that wants to expand into new regions, sectors, lines or brands should insist that a co-existence agreement be concluded instead of an approval agreement. This allows the company to address the potential risks they are likely to become visible in the future and pave the way for more favourable growth. An approval agreement merely authorizes the current use, without worrying about the inevitable development of trademarks. A well-developed approval agreement should highlight the differences between the brands involved. While this is not necessary, it would be helpful to explain that the parties would take steps to minimize confusion or eliminate actual confusion should it occur. The agreement may also indicate specific uses that must be respected by each party (for example. B each party would only use a specific mark with specific words and/or a logo only for certain products or services). To minimize the risk of naked consent, it would be preferable to recall the reasons why the parties believe that there is no risk of confusion. In addition, there would be no harm in including a provision that the parties agree to try to avoid confusion and cooperate and take steps to avoid any confusion that might arise in the future. The precedent of the TTAB Chamber states that “[t]he letter of agreement must reflect the well-considered judgment of experienced businessmen that confusion is not likely in their respective use of the mark. … You have to look at all the circumstances, as in DuPont, to see if consent reflects reality, that there is no risk of confusion in the market, or whether the parties have entered into an agreement that may benefit their own interests, regardless of public confusion. See In re Intuity Medical, Inc. (TTAB 2011), citing In re Mastic Inc.
(Fed). Cir. The Trademark Manual of Examining Procedure (TMEP) can be downloaded free of charge on the U.S. Patent and Trademark OFFICE (USPTO) website under www.uspto.gov/trademark/guides-and-manuals/tmep-archives. The key to the conviction lies in the applicant`s leverage – that is, the applicant`s previous use justifies the removal of the registration of the blocking mark, as long as the registration is no more than five years old. The priority of use is also a basis for opposition to a trademark application during the opposition period.