It is simple registering to trademark a name. The first step in protecting your company’s intellectual property is to register and trademark your brand name. Establishing ownership and rights to a business name is a vital step for companies that wish to keep their brand unique. As a firm expands, registering a trademark protects a name or brand against intellectual property theft or misuse.
Here’s A Step By Step Guide On How To Trademark A Name :
Step 1: Make a Stencil
The first step is to choose your target. That is, you must decide on the type (format) of mark: character mark, which consists of a word or combination of words, font or specific design for the words, etc.; design mark, which is a stylized design with or without letters, such as a logo; or sound mark, which is a jingle or distinctive sound. If you want to trademark a name, you should probably go with a character or design mark. Many trademarks are restricted to merely the conventional character set (for example, protecting the word “bubble” in ordinary typeface), but marks can also be personalized or styled to incorporate graphics, logos, various letterforms, or combinations. For further information, see this PTO resource.
However, keep in mind that your trademark must be distinct enough to identify it from other trademarks currently in use. From strongest to weakest, the PTO lists the following categories for assessing trademark eligibility:
- Fanciful marks are those that employ created terminology for the sole purpose of serving as a trademark or service mark (Pepsi, Exxon) or are utterly out of ordinary usage. Fanciful marks are more likely to be trademarkable.
- Arbitrary marks are ones that contain frequent terms but are not often associated with the items or services being trademarked (for example, Apple Computers or Yahoo!). Arbitrary markings are less likely to be trademark eligible than imaginative marks, although they are nevertheless likely to be accepted.
- Suggestive marks are ones that “demand imagination, thinking, or perception” to determine the nature of the items or services being branded. Suggestive marks may or may not be original or distinctive enough to qualify for trademark protection.
- Descriptive marks are those that are “merely descriptive or deceptively misdescriptive” of the items or services for which a trademark application is being filed. Descriptive marks are unlikely to be eligible for trademark protection.
It is up to you the items and services you connect with your mark, but make sure they are clearly recognizable. You want to be certain that your most critical items and services are protected because anything that is not covered will be accessible for use by others. Unless absolutely required, you may not want to invest the time, energy, and money securing a trademark during your beginning period.
Decisions regarding what to use for your company’s mark are typically best developed in collaboration with a trademark attorney who understands the advantages, disadvantages, and options available.
Step 2: Carry out a Trademark Search
Make careful to scan the USPTO’s database to see whether someone has already registered your mark or a mark that is substantially similar to yours, which may render your efforts null and void. When performing a trademark search, it is recommended that you obtain the assistance of an expert attorney. Here, mistakes are easy to make and may be costly.
Step 3: Create and submit your trademark application.
Complete and submit the online application. A processing charge of the relevant amount is also required. Fees range from $225 and $325, depending on the type of products or services involved. Pay great attention to correctness when filling out your application. Again, you should seek the advice of an attorney to verify that your file is error-free.
Step 4: Monitor your Application
After you file your application, the USPTO will assign an examiner to it and the review process will commence. Because the examiner will go through (possibly) hundreds of marks to evaluate the legitimacy of your proposed mark, the review process can take several months. Your examiner may request you to make changes to your application, answer extra questions, or provide additional documentation. As a result, it is critical that you monitor your application and update critical contact information throughout the process. You can track the status of your application by visiting the USPTO’s Trademark Status & Document Retrieval page. Failure to fulfill a response date may necessitate reapplying for your trademark.
Step 5: Obtaining Your Trademark
If the examiner finds no reason to object to your mark, he or she will authorize it for publishing in the USPTO’s weekly newspaper, the “Official Gazette.” Parties that feel the mark will infringe on their own trademark have thirty (30) days from the date of publication to raise an objection or seek an extension of time to oppose the trademark. If an objection is lodged, the case will be heard by the USPTO’s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB). If no objection is made, or if all oppositions are decided in the applicant’s favor, one of two things will happen:
- If the trademark is based on usage, the USPTO will register the mark and deliver a certificate of registration to the applicant/owner.
- If the trademark is based on intent to use (i.e., it has never been used before), the USPTO will issue a Notice of Allowance for the mark. The applicant will then have six months to use the mark and file a Declaration of Its use, or to file a request for an extension. The USPTO will register the mark and provide the applicant/owner a certificate of registration after the “use” test is passed.
By registering to trademark a name, a company or individual gains the exclusive right to use the name in connection with the items and services for which the name is registered across the United States. This inhibits rivals from using the name or developing similar-sounding names to deceive consumers, and it provides you with a legal route to protect yourself against copycats who engage in such sleazy, underhanded behavior. Registering to trademark a name for your firm is a significant step that will assist you in protecting your brand identification from abuse or theft. Registering to trademark a name is a simple procedure that may be completed in a few simple steps. In this article(How to trademark a name), we led you through each process required to register to trademark a name and answered some commonly asked questions regarding trademark registration.FAQS
What Are the Most Common Reasons for Trademark Rejection?
To minimize delays in the trademark registration procedure, you must be aware of several important details.
- A trademark cannot be registered for non-commercial reasons. You may only trademark a brand name that you are now using or intend to use in the near future.
- A generic or descriptive name cannot be registered. To be granted, your trademark name must be unusual or unique in some manner.
- The name must not be likely to cause customer misunderstanding. This might happen if your name is too close to another registered or pending mark. When identical marks are used on similar goods and services, people may become confused and assume they are all from the same source. As a result, every trademark application must include a description of the sort of products or services for which the trademark will be used.
Is it necessary to conduct a trademark name search?
A trademark search is a vital initial step since it may identify and avoid possible trademark issues before you file an application or spend time and money in your business name.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) maintains a massive database of registered trademarks and pending registrations. A simple search will turn up trademarks that are similar to yours. The search results may alert you to the possibility of a denial based on the probability of confusion with an existing trademark.
A more thorough search searches various platforms, such as state trademark databases, company directories, and the internet, to find other identities which are the same as or similar to your intended trademark name. A trademark name search might help you avoid legal and marketing issues in the future.
What Exactly Is a Trademark?
A trademark is a recognized emblem, phrase, word, or symbol that designates a certain product and legally distinguishes it from all other items of the same type.
Trademarks help identify items not just inside the legal and economic systems, but also, and perhaps more importantly, with customers. They are used to identify and protect phrases and design features that identify a product’s or service’s source, owner, or developer. They might be corporate logos, slogans, bands, or a product’s brand name. A service mark, like a trademark, identifies and differentiates the provider of a service rather than a product; the term trademark is frequently used to apply to both trademarks and service marks.