What is a trademark?
A trademark includes any word, name, symbol, or device, or any combination, used, or intended to be used, in commerce to identify and distinguish the goods of one manufacturer or seller from goods manufactured or sold by others, and to indicate the source of the goods. In short, a trademark is a brand name.
What is a service mark?
A service mark is any word, name, symbol, device, or any combination, used, or intended to be used, in commerce, to identify and distinguish the services of one provider from services provided by others, and to indicate the source of the services.
Do I have to register my trademark?
No, but federal registration has several advantages, including notice to the public of the registrant's claim of ownership of the mark, a legal presumption of ownership nationwide, and the exclusive right to use the mark on or in connection with the goods or services set forth in the registration.
What are the benefits of federal trademark registration?
1. Constructive notice nationwide of the trademark owner's claim.
2. Evidence of ownership of the trademark.
3. Jurisdiction of federal courts may be invoked.
4. Registration can be used as a basis for obtaining registration in foreign countries.
5. Registration may be filed with U.S. Customs Service to prevent importation of infringing foreign goods.
Where can I get basic trademark information?
A good source of information is the USPTO website http://www.uspto.gov/main/trademarks.htm It provides a wide variety of information about trademarks and offers electronic filing of trademark applications and other trademark documents.
Do I need an attorney to file a trademark application?
No, although it may be desirable to employ an attorney who is familiar with trademark matters.
Can tmquest file my application?
No, we do not provide legal services.
How long does a trademark registration last?
For a trademark registration to remain valid, an Affidavit of Use ("Section 8 Affidavit") must be filed: (1) between the fifth and sixth year following registration, and (2) within the year before the end of every ten-year period after the date of registration. The registrant may file the affidavit within a grace period of six months after the end of the sixth or tenth year, with payment of an additional fee.
The registrant must also file a §9 renewal application within the year before the expiration date of a registration, or within a grace period of six months after the expiration date, with payment of an additional fee.
Assuming that an affidavit of use is timely filed, registrations granted PRIOR to November 16, 1989 have a 20-year term, and registrations granted on or after November 16, 1989 have a 10-year term.
This is also true for the renewal periods; renewals granted PRIOR to November 16, 1989 have a 20-year term, and renewals granted on or after November 16, 1989 have a 10-year term.
How do I find out whether a mark is already registered?
You may conduct a search free of charge as a simple word/mark search or using our advanced search options.
How often is your information updated?
Our website is updated on a daily basis.
Is a federal registration valid outside the United States?
No. However, if you are a qualified owner of a trademark application pending before the USPTO, or of a registration issued by the USPTO, you may seek registration in any of the countries that have joined the Madrid Protocol by filing a single application, called an "international application," with the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization, through the USPTO.
Can I check the status of my application?
Yes, since our website is updated on a daily basis, you can easily check any action taken on your application at any given time.
Are you associated or affiliated with the US Patent Office?
No, we are not endorsed by or otherwise associated with the US Patent Office. We are a private entity.