Common Trademark Questions

If you are looking for answers to the big trademark questions, we have resources that provide in-depth answers:

Yet many business and intellectual property owners have deeper questions about trademark protection. In this section we cover an array of trademark questions. Sometimes there are no straightforward answers. In those cases we explore the question from many angles to show how the issues can affect you.

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Do I Need a Trademark Attorney?

If you ask an attorney whether you need an attorney, what answer would you expect? The answer might surprise you. When applying for a federal trademark, you do not, repeat, do not need an attorney. The U.S. Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) is freely available to anyone. You can file your trademark application online at the United … [Read More]

Amazon Brand Registry Trademark Requirements

After a several weeks-long closure, the Amazon Brand Registry reopened in May 2017 with several changes. The Amazon Brand Registry offers protections to private sellers who have registered trademarks. It offers such protections as predictive automation upon Amazon’s receipt of your report about trademark infringers and gives you added control over the listing of products … [Read More]

How to Trademark a Logo

One of the common questions I get from potential clients revolves around how to trademark a logo. When a small business is launching, taking the time to ensure your logo doesn’t infringe on someone else’s trademark is an important step. How important is it for a business owner to trademark their logo? Consider the case … [Read More]

How Long Does it Take to Get a Trademark?

An Important Note As soon as you start using your mark in commerce, you establish what is known as “Common Law Trademark Rights.” This isn’t a guarantee that the mark will “belong” to you, as it’s still very possible someone else already registered the mark. You will also have a hard time attempting to take … [Read More]

Is Your Business Name Cliché?

Choosing a business name is one of the most important decisions that an entrepreneur can make. The name of a company forms the foundation that all other factors build upon. A weak name can set up an entire business for failure, regardless of its products or services. Avoid overused clichés and choose a name that … [Read More]

Is It Trademark Infringement to Target a Competitor’s Name on Adwords?

To date, the purchase of competitors’ trademarks as keywords that activate sponsored links has spurred more than 100 trademark infringement lawsuits in the U.S. and Europe. In all but a handful of those suits, courts have ruled in favor of the defendant, leaving plaintiff trademark owners largely without recourse. However, for many business owners, the … [Read More]

What are Trademark Licensing Agreements, and Who Benefits from Them?

Imagine you own a t-shirt manufacturing company called Bob’s Snazzy Shirts. You’ve worked hard to make Bob’s the region’s leading producer of t-shirts. After years of slow growth, you’re finally ready to make your company a national contender. You just need that one special shirt design to take you there. One night you go to … [Read More]

Do I Need to Trademark My Business Name?

All businesses benefit from trademark registration. However, does it follow that all businesses should trademark their names? In many instances yes, companies should trademark their names as it provides additional protection at the federal level. But it is not necessarily the top priority for certain types of businesses. So do you need to trademark your … [Read More]

Does a Trademark Registration Give You Rights To the Corresponding Domain Name?

If you own the trademark registration for a particular term or phrase, you might feel that you also have the rights to the corresponding domain name. That is, if you are a software manufacturer that owns a trademark registration for the name “PHILOSOPHY PROGRAMS”, then you should have the rights to PHILOSOPHYPROGRAMS.COM, right? Not necessarily. … [Read More]

Should You Trademark Your Blog Name?

A question I hear more and more frequently: “Should you trademark your blog name?” There are a few ways of thinking about this question. Think about your favorite brand. Did it exist 10 years ago? Did it even exist five years ago? With countless new ways to reach an audience of millions, new brands appear … [Read More]

Your Trademark Application is Filed: Now What?

As Tom Petty sang, the waiting is the hardest part. After you put time, effort, and money into filing your trademark application you want to hear something, anything, from the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO). But in reality, not hearing anything bodes better for your registration. Once they receive your application, along with … [Read More]

What Do You Need To Complete the U.S. Trademark Application Form?

If you want to ace a test in school, what do you do? You prepare in advance. The same principle applies for your the U.S. trademark application form. If you want the greatest chances for approval, you should prepare ahead of time. The more you understand what the application contains, the more completely you can … [Read More]

What Is the Difference Between a Trade Name and a Trademark?

The terms trade name and trademark might sound similar, but they are distinctive in the kinds of protections they offer under law. You do not necessarily hold a trademark on your trade name, though you can apply for one. Additionally, even if you register for a trade name it does not mean that you are … [Read More]

Abandoned Trademark Applications: Why Did It Happen and What Are My Options?

Filing for a trademark is a necessary step in marketing and branding your organization and products. At the same time you also step into a world of bureaucracy and hard deadlines. Skip a step or blow a deadline and you might find a nasty notice from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in … [Read More]

Should You File for a Trademark before Your Product Is Market-Ready?

When is the best time to file a trademark application? For young businesses that haven’t yet broken into the market, registering a trademark may seem like an expensive inconvenience. Why bother registering when your product is not ready? There is one good reason to register your trademark right away: delaying your application increases the risk … [Read More]