In this article, you will discover:
- What trademark protection is.
- How long trademarks generally last.
- Common mistakes people make when applying for a trademark.
What Is Trademark Protection? What Does It Do For Me?
Trademark protection is designed to protect your brand and requires showing that a brand is in use.
In the trademark application process, applicants take their brand name and pick a class and subclass that describes what the product or service is. The subclasses have to describe the type of good or service they sell. You may have more than one class or several sub-classes and pay additional filing fees for each class.
In the application process, applicants will eventually have to submit a statement of use (either to begin with or later in the process) and show that their product will be used in commerce.
If applicants do not do these things, the trademark examiner will reject them for several reasons.
If you have yet to start selling your product and file a trademark application, and then later file a statement of use once you start selling the product or service in commerce, then you will have to pay additional filing fees.
As a result, we advise our clients to start selling their product or service first and apply for the trademark afterward, whenever possible. Remember that certain words will not be accepted in the trademark process, namely words that are descriptive or general in nature, like “water” or “food.”
How Long Does A Trademark Last?
A trademark can last forever if you pay various maintenance fees and continually use it in commerce.
For example, if you stop using a trademark in commerce and sue someone else for trademark infringement while asserting that they have been using your brand and the same class or sub-class categories, they could respond by claiming that you are no longer using the trademark and get out of the lawsuit as a result. Additionally, you will lose the right to the trademark if you do not pay your maintenance fees every few years. Someone else may claim it.
Should I Try To Apply For Trademark Protection On My Own? What Are Common Mistakes For Those That Do?
If you try to apply for trademark protection on your own, you might not choose enough sub-classes to protect your brand.
Many also find the statement of use section very difficult because it requires showing a few images and a strong demonstration that the product is being sold in commerce. These documents are often full of “legalese,” so an intellectual property attorney should prepare, write, and file trademark applications to get through the process and see the trademark application approved without any issue. Steer clear of unnecessary delays and complications for your trademark application.
With the guidance of a skilled attorney in Trademark Law, you can have the peace of mind that comes with knowing that we’ll make it look easy.
For more information on Understanding Trademark Law In The United States, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (425) 966-2246 today.