Defensive Trademark Law and Legal Definition

Defensive trademark is a form of trademark used to prevent trademark infringement. A defensive trademark can be applied for by a trademark owner of a well known trademark for goods or services that are not intended to be used by that owner. The purpose of filing a defensive application is to reduce the possibility of other traders using the trade mark for unrelated goods or services.

However, the prior trademark should be distinctive, famous, or even unique for applying for a defensive trademark. Some states require additional registration of these trademarks as defensive marks in order to qualify for dilution protection.