A Quick Glance…
A trademark, registered in the United States, lasts indefinitely as long as the owner continues to use the mark in commerce to indicate the source of goods and services, and maintains it with timely filings. A trademark’s registration must be maintained through specific documents which have to be filed at regular intervals. The first of these, a Declaration of Use (Section 8 Affidavit), must be filed between the fifth and sixth year after the initial registration. After this, the registration must be renewed (Section 9 Renewal) every ten years. Each renewal also requires a concurrent filing of a Declaration of Use. Failure to meet these requirements may result in cancellation of the trademark.
What is a trademark?
A trademark is simply a form of intellectual property that helps distinguish the goods or services belonging to one company from those offered by another. It will come as no surprise that the registration of a trademark with national authorities is complex and could be expensive in certain countries.
What kinds of trademark can be registered?
There are five types of trademarks that can be registered: word, design, shape of goods or packaging, slogan, and a combination mark. The trademark law provides protection to consumers from confusion in the marketplace. Consumers benefit by knowing for sure that they are purchasing a product from the company named on the trademark.
Trademarks vs. Copyrights: Which one is right for you?
If you are looking to make your idea into a business, there are two types of intellectual property that need to be considered. The first is copyrights and the second is trademarks. Is your intellectual property already identified? Can someone else use it for their business? Do you want to protect your company as a whole or want to protect specific products within your company?
A copyright protects original creations like books, music, films, paintings and more. A trademark protects words, phrases and symbols that distinguish one company’s business from another. It is important not to confuse the two because they serve different purposes for different purposes: a trademark would be used if you wanted protection for a word or symbol that identifies your business; a copyright would be used if you wanted protection for a text, like a book that you have written.
Should i trademark my business name?
There are many factors to consider in this regard. If you are considering trademarking your company name, it is important to let a third party determine if there is any confusion about ownership. There are several ways to protect the brand name: Using (word order), a symbol, a font, colors.
Other ways to protect the company’s name include registering with the USPTO or using TM or ® in any marketing material. These methods can help serve as an informal trademark and discourage others from adopting similar names for their own use.
How much does it cost to trademark a business name?
In order to trademark your business name you will need to fill out a form and pay a fee. The cost for filing an application can range from $200 to $1,000 depending on the size of the mark. An attorney can help you determine how much it will cost to file your application.
What rights does trademark registration provide?
A trademark provides the following rights:
- The right to prevent someone else from using a similar mark or a word, design, term, etc. that might confuse consumers about which company is providing the goods or services;
- The right to stop anyone from using words and phrases that are generic and not distinctive as trademarks if they are used in connection with your goods or services;
- The right to recover losses for those who have been prevented from doing so because of another’s adoption of a similar mark.
What are the legal requirements to renew a trademark registration?
Different countries may have different requirements to renew a trademark registration. In order to renew your trademark registration you will need to:
- Renew the approval of the mark with the trademark office;
- File an application for renewal;
- Pay a fee for renewal of the mark;
- And renew any documentary evidence, if there is any.
If your trademark was registered in the United States, it is important that you file a Declaration of Use to notify the USPTO of your intention to use the mark in commerce. You must also file an affidavit of use with three years before it expires.
What happens if I lose my trademark, can I get it back?
A trademark can be lost for a number of reasons:
- The most common reason is that the trademark owner fails to make use of it for a certain amount of time. If the trademark owner does not renew his or her right to use the mark, after five years then it becomes abandon and anyone can register it if they want. This is called “abandonment.”
- The second way that a trademark can be lost is by assigning rights to another company who doesn’t keep up with the required maintenance; these are called “assignments.”
- The third way that this can happen is when an existing mark becomes generic and loses its meaning to identify one company as opposed to another: this would be called “genericide.”