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Protect Business By Registering Trademark

Posted by Thomas P. Howard | Jan 19, 2024 | 0 Comments

A trademark can be a phrase, word, design, symbol, or combination of all of these, that allows people to identify your services or goods. Trademarks are how customers can recognize you and distinguish you as separate from competitors, in addition to providing you with legal protection for your brand. There is a difference between owning a trademark and registering it. You can begin to acquire common law trademark rights once you start using it with your goods or services in the geographic area where it is used. To obtain nationwide rights, however, you may need to federally register your trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”). Navigating the trademark application process can seem daunting at first, but exciting as you take another step in creating for your business.

Prior To Submission

Before submitting your trademark application, there are some things to consider. Conduct a thorough search to ensure there are no similar or identical trademarks. This can save you both time and money in a brand name, since you won't have to find out later that it cannot be used. This reduces the risk of your trademark application from being denied due to confusion conflicts. Choose a trademark that is strong, as weak or generic aspects may be more difficult to defend. Go for unique and memorable marks so it is easier to protect. Trademarks are categorized into many classes depending on the nature of the services or goods they represent. If you have questions about your submission, going to see a dedicated lawyer who knows about trademarks specifically can be helpful. Your lawyer can review the information on your application for flaws or weak points before filing.

After Registering Trademark

Once your trademark is approved and registered, you must renew it when required. A trademark registration gives you exclusive rights, but it is your responsibility to enforce them if someone infringes. You may want to monitor the market for your field or enlist an infringement watchdog service who can take action against possible offenders. Document every time that you use your trademark. By law, trademarks must be used ongoing for your brand. Those with the earliest and/or most frequent use in a commercial way may be deemed the winner if a dispute arises. Over time, your brand may grow and evolve. If you want to make significant changes to your brand name or logo, you may want to file a new trademark application so that the updated version is also protected.

Your trademark will be a reflection of your business. To safeguard the future of your services and goods, it is wise to register your trademark and apply again if your brand changes. As our friends at Cohen & Cohen have seen, serious financial loss can result from trademark infringement. Don't forget to keep a look out for those who could be unlawfully copying or using your trademark without permission. Protect the business you have built by registering your trademark so it cannot be used by others. And if you need help with the process, consider consulting with a trademark lawyer for further assistance.

About the Author

Thomas P. Howard

Thomas Howard is an experienced trial lawyer that handles intellectual property litigation nationwide, including copyright, trademark, trade secret and patent litigation, as well as complex civil litigation, including breach of contract, interference with contract, breach of fiduciary duty, conspiracy, fraud and fraudulent transfer of assets.


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