It is not uncommon for people to use other companies’ logos for various reasons, however, it is very common for people to encounter legal problems when using a logo without the proper permission. If you wish to avoid said legal issues you may be wondering how you can ask a company permission to use their logo.
To learn how to legally obtain the necessary permission to use a company’s logo in your work, continue reading for information that may keep you out of court.
How to Ask For Permission to Use a Company’s Logo
People use other companies’ logos for various reasons such as to advertise that they are selling a particular product or brand on their website or perhaps just mentioning it in a review.
Regardless of why you wish to use another company’s logo, it is important that you have the necessary permission if you want to avoid legal issues.
The following list gives a step-by-step explanation of how you can obtain the permission you need to use a company’s logo without getting into trouble.
Have a Plan and Confirm That Permission is Necessary
Your first course of action when using a company’s logo is to find out if you truly need permission to use the logo. It is important that you have a clear plan and know what you want to use the logo for and where it will be used.
Common reasons why people use other companies’ logos are:
- They are a retailer selling other companies’ products and wish to use the logo as an advertisement that they are carrying a particular item
- They are reviewing a product and wish to use the logo to show which product they are discussing
- They are giving a presentation that discusses a particular company or product and want to use it as a visual graphic
- They are using it in an academic setting or to create a PowerPoint presentation
There are some cases in which you may be permitted to use the logo without asking the owner but it is important to understand if this exception applies to your situation.
Generally, the exception applies when people are using a company’s logo for academic/reference use or if the logo is considered public domain. Public domain refers to any works that have been published prior to the year 1924.
You must first state your intentions; what do you plan on using the logo for? Will you be making any money from the use of the logo? These are all important questions that need to be answered before moving on to the next step.
Locate Trademark Owner
Once you have determined that you do in fact need permission to use the logo as intended it is time to locate the owner of the trademark. This can sometimes be difficult but in most cases, this information can easily be obtained by visiting the company’s website.
The best way to locate the rightful owner is to try visiting the information page on the company’s website. The information page will have a way to call, email, or snail mail the company so you can find out who owns the right to the owner.
State Your Case and Ask for Usage Permission
Now that you have the proper contact information it is time to contact the owner and ask for permission to use their logo.
It is imperative that you clearly state why you wish to use it and how you plan on using the logo. If the owner of the logo permits you to use the logo as you intend the next step is to find out if they want financial compensation and work out a payment agreement.
Cover Your Assets
The final and most important step after obtaining the necessary permission from the owner of the logo is to have a written contract stating everything that you have agreed upon.
Failing to do so can result in legal issues down the road if there is ever a dispute. Having written permission and a contract that clearly details exactly how you intend on using the logo will ensure that all parties are happy and no negative implications can occur.
Asking Permission Saves You From Begging For Forgiveness
As you can see, it is not a difficult process to get the necessary permission to use a company’s logo. By taking a few simple steps to ask for the rights to use a logo you can save yourself a lot of headaches and money. It is always better to preserve your reputation and ask permission than to find out later that you have broken the law.