Trademarks came about originally as a way to classify a business’s merchandise. The Common Law concerning trademarks has always been to protect the public from fraud and deceit and to stop the confusion over products and where they originally came from. Businesses are protected as well when they acquire a trademark because in turn it protects their good will concerning their merchandise. This is why the trademark law is good, because it protects both sides, the business end and the buyer side.
How to Get a Trademark
To get the ball rolling you’ll need to decide what mark or drawing that will represent your business. This can get tricky because businesses can use a mark together and independently. For widespread use across an array of advertising possibilities, the best protection for a company is to register its name, logo, and a slogan. Other businesses may want to register with one trademark that they consistently use and is of utmost importance to the brand. A trademark drawing depends on the words, design, and phrases you pick. This may not protect different fonts, colors, styles, and sizes unless you register all of them. These kinds of complications makes it seem wise to get some legal help from a lawyer who practices in trademark laws.
Maintenance of a Trademark
Trademark maintenance is how you keep up with your mark once you have it. Finding the right opportunities in business is crucial and so is maintaining your rights to use your trademark. Once your trademark is registered you have 5 and up to 6 years to file the official USPTO section 8 and section 15 forms. At the end of the 6th year, you have the option to purchase a 6-month grace period. If you have not taken care of the forms by then you run the risk of losing your registration and having to start over or pay more fees. Once you have established your registered trademark, you renew every 10 years. Mark your calendar though, because they won’t remind you. These are more good reasons to get and keep a lawyer who specializes in trademarks to help you through the processes legally and in a timely manner.
Benefits of a Trademark Lawyer
A trademark lawyer has the training and experience to advise you on important issues effecting your trademark. For instance, a lawyer can help you prepare your trademark and ensure it is accurately classified and identified with your merchandise. These things make your mark more protectable legally. If for any reason your trademark is refused, a specialized lawyer will know how to proceed with corrections and then reapply. They can also perform proper searches on the USPTO database to check for any marks which may conflict with yours. They can do even more extensive searches including state level databases and unregistered common law sources. Make sure your lawyer is licensed to practice law for any type of trademark representation or advise.