The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is the only federal agency that can grant trademarks. It’s part of the Department of Commerce and its main office is located in Alexandria, Virginia.
The USPTO handles trademark registrations and applications for businesses throughout the country.
In commerce trademark rights arise from either legitimate use of a mark in connection with particular goods or services, or by filing a proper application in the United States with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
In order to obtain trademark rights in the United States, you must use your mark as an identifier of your product or service. You can also file an application for federal registration of a mark. When you apply for trademark, you will be issued a certificate of registration which gives you exclusive rights to use that mark nationwide on all products or services listed on the certificate.
The basic principles of trademark law are embodied in the Lanham Act, which went into effect on July 5, 1947.
As a general rule, a trademark is any word, name, symbol or device used to identify the goods of one party from those of another. Trademarks can include words (like Coca-Cola), phrases (like Just Do It), letters (like IBM), symbols (like the Nike swoosh) and even colors.
To be considered distinctive by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), a trademark must either be inherently distinctive or have acquired distinctiveness through secondary meaning. That means that if you come up with a new term for your product that’s never been used before, you should be able to register it as a trademark without having to show proof of secondary meaning first. You’ll also need to make sure your mark doesn’t conflict with other trademarks that are already registered or pending registration—this is where searching becomes important!
The original intent of trademarks was to benefit both consumers and manufacturers.
A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol or design that identifies the source of goods or services. Trademarks serve to distinguish the goods and services of one company from those of others.
For example, a consumer may purchase a product with a trademarked brand name such as “Kodak” on it because they want to be sure they are purchasing authentic Kodak products. A manufacturer can use its mark as part of its advertising and marketing campaign by putting its mark on billboards, television commercials and other media outlets where consumers might see them.
What makes trademarks unique is that they can be owned by someone who isn’t involved in making anything tangible at all—they are simply words connected with an idea or concept (such as Apple’s “Think Differently” slogan). For this reason, trademarks are considered valuable intellectual property (IP) assets because they represent intangible pieces of information that help companies distinguish themselves from competitors and protect their goodwill from being used without permission.
A trademark holder must monitor its mark and police misuse to maintain exclusive rights to its trademark.
- Monitoring of trademark use. A trademark holder must monitor its mark and police misuse to maintain exclusive rights to its trademark. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has a service called the “Trademark Post-Registration Program” where you can search for registered trademarks in the US and look up their status, which may help you with monitoring your own mark. You can also monitor how other brands use similar or related words in their marketing campaigns through Google Alerts or by using social media monitoring tools like Hootsuite or Buffer’s Brandwatch.
- Monitoring of trademark infringement. If someone is using your valuable intellectual property without permission, it could be grounds for legal action under federal law (15 USC § 1114). This includes unauthorized use by competitors trying to piggyback off your brand awareness and goodwill while avoiding paying licensing fees or royalties; however, there are some exceptions if they aren’t making money from this use such as through selling merchandise with their own version of your logo on it — but only if they’re clearly advertising that fact so consumers know what they’re getting into before making purchases! Also keep in mind that celebrities don’t have any special rights when it comes down to copyrighting/trademarking certain phrases or catchphrases associated with themselves unless those terms were created specifically by them first hand during interviews etcetera.”
Trademark holders usually register their marks with the USPTO in order to maintain exclusive nationwide rights to their marks.
You can also file for a trademark in the following jurisdictions:
- The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)
- The Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO)
- The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO)
If you are filing for a federal trademark application with the USPTO, you will need to complete and submit an electronic application through their Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS).
Filing a federal trademark application with the USPTO is considered an investment because it gives the applicant exclusive national rights to the trademark.
Registering your trademark is an investment of time, effort, and money. The process can be complicated, but it’s a good idea to invest in your business by protecting what you have. Trademark registration will give you exclusive rights to the registered mark nationwide and prevent others from using the same or similar marks for similar products or services.
If you want to file a trademark for your business, the process is relatively quick and easy. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) makes it possible to file an application online using their Electronic Business Center (EBC).
You can use this service if you’re filing:
- A new application for an existing mark (you don’t have to submit a paper form)
- An extension of time to oppose another party’s pending registration or renewal application (this requires a paper form)
Once you’ve decided on a name for your business and have decided to register your trademark, it’s time to get started. The first step is to file a trademark application with the USPTO. You can do this online at the USPTO website, though you may also mail in a paper application if you prefer not to use online services. Fees vary depending on whether or not you choose an electronic filing system called TEAS Plus or fill out forms manually through EFS-Web (Electronic Filing System). You must pay both fees before submitting any paperwork so make sure these are ready when starting an application!