A Complete Guide to Obtaining a Trademark
You've come up with a distinct, memorable name and brand for your company, products, and services. There's only one problem: anyone else can use that name right now, and you don't want your hard work and inspiration to go to waste. Protecting your name and brand requires obtaining and submitting a registered trademark.
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Determine whether you require a trademark in the first place.
The term "trademark" is frequently used as a catch-all phrase to describe a variety of methods for safeguarding your company's intellectual property. In truth, trademarks are highly detailed in terms of what they permit and what they do not. It's important to understand the level of protection you require before deciding whether or not you need to file a trademark application.
Intellectual Property Protection Types:
Trademarks – These are the names and logos that you use to identify your company, products, and services. The logo and brand phrase for the “Brilliant Blue Widgets” collection of gizmos, for example.
A patent is a legal document that protects an innovation. Consider the original blue widget's production design.
Copyright is a legal term that refers to the legal protection of a creative or literary creation. Take, for example, the images of the original blue widget on your website.
If you're forming an LLC or corporation, business name registration protects the name of your company in the state where it's formed.
2. Understand the Benefits of Using a Trademark
You have the exclusive right to use certain words, phrases, and logos to identify your business, products, and services if you have a registered trademark. If another company or individual plagiarizes what you've trademarked, you can sue them to stop them from using it. Only content or logos used for commercial purposes are protected by trademarks. You can trademark the name of a product or business, but not anything that has no economic value or generates no cash.
3. Understand the Importance of a Unique Trademark
Common, generic, or descriptive names are not trademarkable. For example, getting a trademark for “Sweeping Broom” is quite unlikely because it is merely descriptive. A trademark, on the other hand, must be distinct and unique. If your trademark isn't unique, it'll probably be rejected because there's a chance it'll be confused with an already-registered trademark. This can happen if another trademark that is identical to yours already existing and is utilized for similar goods and services. When you apply for a trademark, you must describe the products or services for which the trademark will be used, and the USPTO will determine if the trademark is both distinctive and non-confusable.
4. Choose the Trademark You Want to Register .
Only a single, distinct term, phrase, or logo can be trademarked. Not all trademarks can be registered, and not all trademarks can be legally protected. The USPTO suggests that:
Think about the following before filing a trademark/service mark application:
Whether or not the mark you intend to register is registrable, and how difficult it will be to protect your mark based on its strength.”
You must consider the following factors when choosing and defining your trademark:
The trademark's format, which might be a simple character mark, a stylized mark, a design mark, or a sound mark. The goods and services that will be covered by the trademark, as this will have an impact on whether or not you are given the mark. Your “filing basis” — if you are already using the trademark for commercial purposes, intend to use it, have used it elsewhere in the world, and have priority due to a foreign application.
5. Check the Trademark Database to See If Your Desired Mark Is Already In Use.
Because a trademark must be unique in the context in which it is used, it's crucial to know if a similar trademark for similar goods and services already exists. The Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) is a searchable database maintained by the USPTO that you can use to determine if your trademark or one that is similar to yours is already in use. Check to discover if your proposed trademark and close variants have already been registered. If there is, it's conceivable that your trademark application will be rejected.
6. Gather the information you'll need and file a trademark application.
You can file for a trademark online through the USPTO, but you will have to pay a fee for the application to be processed. Regardless of whether your trademark application is successful or not, you must pay this cost. The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has some fantastic resources on what you'll need to supply.
After you've applied, you can use the Trademark Status and Document Retrieval (TSDR) system to track the status of your trademark.
7. Have the USPTO grant or deny your trademark application.
The USPTO will decide whether or not to issue you a trademark after you've gone through the trademark application process. There may be objections to your use of the trademark during or after this process, and you may be required to supply additional information. You will be granted the trademark if you can overcome any objections filed by the USPTO or others. This Process will take some tile so be patie
8. Keep your trademark.
No wthis is something you need to stay on top of!
If you want to keep your trademark once it's been issued, you'll need to file periodic maintenance filings. Do you require assistance in obtaining a trademark?
Finding out if a trademark is available, collecting all of the necessary paperwork, and filing with the USPTO may be a complicated and time-consuming procedure. We can assist you. Our Trademark Name Search and Registration service includes the following features:
An skilled trademark attorney can provide legal advice. A comprehensive search of existing trademarks was conducted. A trademark that has been registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Managing all communications with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) until the name is approved
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