A registered trademark is only one form of intellectual property, but for individuals, business, and organizations, it can be as important as patents or copyrights. A trademark can be words, symbols, or designs—or a combination of them—that is used to distinguish goods and services in the marketplace. It is highly recommended that you hire a Tampa trademark attorney to help you register your trademark.
Having your TM officially registered on the Principal Register has a number of benefits, which are especially important for businesses and organizations. Some include:
- Evidentiary presumptions in cases of infringement
- Ensuring you, as the owner, benefit from the goodwill associated with your goods and services
- Public notification of ownership and registration
- Exclusive nationwide rights to use the mark for the associated goods or services
- Ability to use the R (®) symbol, as opposed to the TM (™) or SM (℠) symbols used with unregistered marks
The process of obtaining a registered mark can be complex—something you should not attempt with without the help of a Tampa trademark attorney. This legal representation will ensure you the strongest protection by avoiding potential pitfalls, such as improper research and/or poorly prepared applications.
Most importantly, your attorney can search the USPTO records using complicated search expressions to determine whether or not your mark conflicts with any pending or registered marks. This is especially important because it provides insight into what the USPTO may uncover during its search.
Preliminary research will need to be conducted to determine the likelihood of receiving allowance. Searching can also uncover marks that may possibly be infringed by your proposed mark. In this stage, the USPTO cannot offer you any opinion concerning your proposed mark because your application is not filed. It is crucial that an experienced Tampa trademark attorney assist you with this preliminary trademark search.
Depending on the search results, a trademark application will be filed next. Trademark applications are complicated and must be precise. It is important not to make any mistakes which could unnecessarily limit your protection or impact the likelihood of allowance. This step includes application fees and drawings and, in some cases, specimens.
Prior to allowance, a mark will be published for opposition. If no opposition is filed by a third party, you will receive the notice of allowance for registration.
If you get your trademark registered, you have the right to sell or transfer the trademark through “assignments.” You also have the option of licensing the trademark rights to others.
To speak with a Tampa trademark attorney today, give us a call at Larson & Larson at 727-546-0660 to schedule a consultation and get started with the process of registration as soon as possible.