What You Need To Know About Registered Trademarks
Before you file a trademark, you need to confirm that no one else has beat you to it! Registered trademarks are legally guarded against unauthorized use, so you risk prosecution if you don’t research properly. To help you avoid potential infringement, we prepared a step-by-step guide on how to check trademark availability.
Apart from respecting other people’s intellectual property, you can also protect your own using DoNotPay’s services. Get the full scoop on trademark registration and the advantages of having a trademark.
The moment you start using either mark in commerce, you are recognized as the official holder, but there’s a catch. While registration is not a necessity, common law rights only provide limited protection—your brand is guarded in the specific geographic area you are operating in.
If you are aiming for a higher level of trademark protection, you need to apply for:
- State-level registration—Acquiring state protection means your intellectual property is safe within state lines. Once you decide to branch out, you need to register the trademark in each new state your services cover
- Federal registration—To ensure your trademark is protected in the entire U.S. territory, you must file for federal registration with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). They will add your brand to their public database of registered trademarks
- International registration—Trademark protection laws differ from one country to another, but an international treaty is currently in effect. The Madrid Protocol ensures your brand is safeguarded in the 124 signee states
According to the Judiciary Data and Analysis Office (JDAO), trademark and copyright case filings have increased in the past two decades.
As an up-and-coming entrepreneur, you need to take the proper steps to protect your original idea. Using registered trademarks will legitimize your small business and increase your chances of success.
If you are interested in registering your trademark, some of the benefits you will enjoy are:
- Legal protection—Gives you the ability to press charges against an individual or organization that infringes on your rights and ask for financial compensation
- Proof of ownership—Your registration certificate serves as proof of ownership in case of fraud or counterfeiting
- Confiscation of counterfeit goods—Allows you to report to the U.S. Custom and Border Protection (CBP) and ask them to intercept any faked goods labeled with your registered trademarks
- Brand recognition—Distinguishes your goods and services from competitors in the marketplace
The first step to a successful registration is to check the registered trademarks list provided by the USPTO. It doesn’t take much time or effort, and it’s one of the crucial trademark requirements.
You can conduct the search using the Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS).
Here’s how to look up trademarks in the federal database:
- Go to the official USPTO website and click on the Trademarks tab
- Select Searching Trademarks in the Application Process section
- Access the TESS list of registered trademarks
- Choose a search option depending on the type of mark
- Submit your query
If the desired term or symbol is already in use, it will show up in the search results.
After checking and confirming the trademark registration name availability, you can move on with your application. The table below contains a breakdown of the process:
|Trademark Registration Steps||Description|
|Determine the type of trademark||You need to specify what kind of trademark you’ll be registering. It can be any textual or pictorial symbol, including but not limited to:|
|Classify your goods or services||
|Fill in a trademark application form||The USPTO requires you to fill out a form via the Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS). You need to provide:
|Pay the registration fees||Depending on which TEAS filing option you choose, the initial cost will be:
If you enlist the services of an IP lawyer during the process, the expenses will include the flat attorney fees
Coming up with an original trademark is the difficult part—the rest is a cakewalk, thanks to DoNotPay! Our Trademark Registration product enables you to complete the application process with a few clicks.
All you have to do is follow these steps:
- Subscribe to DoNotPay
- Choose the Trademark Registration product
- Tell us about your brand and answer a series of questions about the trademark
- Provide evidence that you have paid the registration fees
Our AI-based app will ask you to e-sign the application form and forward it to the USPTO.
Handling annoying administrative issues is the last thing you want to worry about while trying to build a business empire. The good news is that you do not have to! DoNotPay has developed many nifty products that make various pesky tasks easy to complete.
Some of the small-business-related matters we can help you with are:
- Registering your business name, logo, or slogan as a trademark
- Taking out business loans
- Obtaining an Employer Identification Number (EIN)
- Automating the filing of 83(b) election forms
- Requesting your money from customers who won’t pay
- Registering a DMCA agent
DoNotPay can also make communication with your clients or business partners easier as we enable you to fax and mail your letters, forms, and other important documents without leaving your office.
It is no secret that building a trusting relationship with clients takes time and effort, so why have all that hard work ruined by negative online reviews that are fake? DoNotPay is here to help you remove illegitimate, fake reviews in a matter of clicks!
Want to dispute unfair chargeback requests but are not sure how to go about it? By using our Fight Chargebacks feature, you can have DoNotPay create a customized chargeback rebuttal document in a few minutes.
With our app, you can also protect your trademark from people trying to use it, file the self-certification request with the Privacy Shield program, and handle many other aspects of your business hassle-free!