Are you wondering whether and how to hire a trademark law firm?
Businesses often fail to hire a trademark law firm to determine if it’s legal for them to use the name they’ve chosen for their business. However, registering your trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is an excellent way to avoid expensive trademark disputes. It can also be beneficial to hire a trademark attorney to walk you through the trademark registration process. The following five scenarios show when you may need a trademark law firm.
#1: Deciding to File the Application
It’s important to know if someone else already owns the rights to the trademark you wish to register. You need to perform a comprehensive search because not all trademarks are federally registered. A trademark attorney can perform this search and determine if you should move forward with your application. Your application must specify the basis for filing if you do proceed. The basis for filing may be “intent to use” or “use in commerce.” An attorney can help you determine which is best for your application.
#2: Filing the Application
You may find it beneficial to hire an attorney to file your trademark application. This is especially true if you’re already busy running a business. An attorney can help with several things during the application that could affect your trademark rights. These tasks include describing your products and services in the best way. They also include responding to refusals to register from the examining attorney.
#3: Monitoring the Application Status
Trademark applications go through a lengthy process with many changes in status. You need to be diligent in monitoring the status of your application to ensure you submit and receive documentation on time. An attorney can help with this continuing process.
#4: Learning about Your Ownership Rights
Trademark laws generally give a trademark owner the exclusive right to use the trademark on the products and services. These laws also protect the commercial identity of a trademark owner. An owner’s commercial identity includes characteristics such as advertising investment, reputation, and goodwill. A trademark attorney can educate you on your rights as a trademark owner.
#5: Enforcing your trademark rights
Early detection of possible trademark infringement is essential for protecting your trademark. Failing to defend it vigorously can diminish your claim on it, or even cause the USPTO to cancel your registration. The USPTO attempts to ensure no one receives a registration for similar trademarks, but it’s up to owners to protect theirs. Many business owners find that it’s not feasible to monitor, detect, and enforce their trademarks without an attorney.
Are you ready to register your trademark or are you having issues defending one you’ve already registered? Contact the Wilbanks Law Firm, P.C. online to learn more about how a trademark law firm can help you and your business.