Registering a trademark is one of the most effective strategies companies can use to protect their intellectual property (IP) assets. While the process of applying for a trademark registration can be daunting, registration comes with a number of benefits, such as nationwide constructive notice and the right to file a trademark infringement action in federal court. However, once registered, trademarks do not necessarily stay registered in perpetuity. Trademark owners can inadvertently lose their trademark rights, and third parties may petition the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to cancel existing registrations in some circumstances. Canceling a trademark registration (or defending against a cancellation) is complex, but an Alabama trademark lawyer can assist you.
Let’s say that your company has made it through the trademark application process and that your trademark has been approved for registration, but you receive a notice from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) that your application is now being published for “opposition.” Even worse, your attorney informs you that another business is opposing the registration of your trademark. Or consider the opposite: You have a registered trademark, but the attorney handling your trademark maintenance informs you that another company is attempting to register a trademark that is strikingly similar to yours. What do you do? Ideally, you would turn to an Alabama trademark lawyer who could help you handle a trademark opposition.
Trademarks protect information that identifies the source of a product and helps consumers differentiate that product from others. In the vast majority of cases, this information takes the form of brand names, logos, slogans, tag lines, and jingles. After all, the easiest way for consumers to identify the source of a product is through a distinctive mark that stands out from others. But trademarks can also encompass other less traditional, less obvious brand elements that nonetheless serve as source-identifiers. These nontraditional trademarks may be eligible for trademark registration with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) with the help of an Alabama trademark lawyer.
Trademark registration confers a host of benefits that are not available to common law trademarks. For instance, registering your trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) gives you rights throughout the United States and allows you to sue for trademark infringement in federal courts. Federal registration also provides nationwide constructive notice that your trademark belongs to you. However, the USPTO frequently refuses trademark applications for a variety of reasons. A trademark search executed by an Alabama trademark search attorney can help you avoid stumbling into one of those pitfalls.
Trademark registration is essential for protecting companies’ names, brands and logos. Registering a trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) provides nationwide protection—and this protection affords the registered owner the right to prevent not only the use of the registered mark itself but also the use of any “confusingly similar” marks to promote competing goods and services.