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What Is A Trademark?

A trademark is any word, name, symbol or device or combination thereof an entity uses or intends to use to identify and distinguish the entity’s goods from those of others, and to indicate the source of the goods. A service mark is the same thing except it identifies a source of services. The term ‘mark’ is used to collectively refer to trademarks and service marks. As consumers become familiar with particular marks, and the goods or services they represent, marks can acquire a secondary meaning, as indicators of quality. Thus, established marks help consumers answer another question: “Is this product or service a good one to purchase?” For this reason, the well-known marks of reputable companies are valuable business assets, worthy of nurturing and protection.

What Is A Federal Registration?

Through the use of trademark registration attorneys like Hasse & Nesbitt LLC, a federal registration is obtained from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in Washington, D.C. The federal registration includes a description of the mark, the owner of the mark, and identifies the goods/services with which the mark is used. Goods and services are divided into several classes, depending on the type of goods/services being described.

Why Should Pursue A Federal Registration Of My Mark?

  • The use of a mark without a federal registration provides only a trademark process meeting with our trademark register attorney limited geographical coverage, may lead to the loss or limitation of trademark rights, and may increase exposure to potential liability for infringing the trademark rights of others.

  • A first user of a mark, who obtains a federal registration, is afforded nationwide protection for the mark when it is used in conjunction with the goods/services identified in the registration even if use is not nationwide.

  • A federally registered mark provides constructive notice to others that the registrant has rights in the mark.

  • A federally registered mark provides a presumption of the mark's ownership and validity.

  • A federally registered mark can be used to establish rights in a worldwide web domain name, should a dispute arise.

The process can be complicated, but our patent and trademark lawyers will help you in obtaining your trademark.

 

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Give Notice of Your Trademark Rights

Providing public notice of trademark rights is important, for registered and unregistered marks alike. The failure to display proper notice of registration, or notice of unregistered trademark rights, is a common mistake, yet the easiest to correct and avoid.

The appropriate form of notice to employ depends on whether the mark is registered with the United States Patent & Trademark Office (“PTO”).

 

Registration Notices

There are three ways to give notice that a mark is registered with the PTO:

  1. Use the symbol, “®”
  2. Use the legend,
    “Registered, U.S. Patent and Trademark Office”
  3. Use the abbreviation,
    “Reg. U.S. Pat. & Tm. Off”

 

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