How to register or trademark a name [No Fluff]

Last updated : Aug 26, 2022
Written by : Jarrod Langwell
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How to register or trademark a name

How do I trademark a name for free?

You can not register a trademark for free. However, you can establish something known as a "common law trademark" for free, simply by opening for business. The benefit of relying on common law trademark rights is that it's free, and you don't need to do any specific work filling out forms, etc.

How much is a trademark for a name?

The basic cost to trademark a business name ranges from $225 to $600 per trademark class. This is the cost to submit your trademark application to the USPTO. The easiest and least expensive way to register your trademark is online, through the USPTO's Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS).

Is it worth it to trademark a name?

Names hold power in business. So establishing ownership of and rights to a business name is an important step for businesses that want to ensure a name remains one-of-a-kind. Registering a trademark helps protect a name or brand from intellectual property theft or misuse as a business grows.

Can I trademark by myself?

Yes, you can trademark yourself, as long as you are in connection with your products or services. This information was provided by our founding attorney, Xavier Morales, Esq. It is possible for an individual to trademark an image of themselves as a product's logo.

How long does a trademark last?

A federal trademark lasts 10 years from the date of registration, with 10-year renewal terms. Between the fifth and sixth year after the registration date, the registrant must file an affidavit to state that the mark is still in use.

Is it hard to trademark a name?

Registering a trademark for a company name is pretty straightforward. Many businesses can file an application online in less than 90 minutes, without a lawyer's help. The simplest way to register is on the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's Web site,

Is it better to trademark or copyright a name?

A trademark can protect your name and logo in case someone else wants to use them for their own purposes. Also, you cannot really copyright a name, since copyright protects artistic works. This is exactly why you need to have a trademark that protects your company's intellectual property, such as your logo.

Can I copyright my name?

No. Names are not protected by copyright law. Some names may be protected under trademark law. Contact the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, or see Circular 33 "Copyright Protection Not Available for Names, Titles, or Short Phrases".

What does a trademark protect?

A trademark is a sign capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one enterprise from those of other enterprises. Trademarks are protected by intellectual property rights.

Should I get a trademark or LLC first?

4. Should you get an LLC first or trademark? Yes, you should get an LLC first before a trademark because the trademark application will need to identify the LLC as the trademark owner. You should create an LLC or business entity before you file a trademark application.

Can I trademark a name without a business?

You can't register a trademark for non-business purposes. You can only trademark a brand name that you're using in business or that you intend to use in business in the near future. You can't register a generic or descriptive name.

What are the three requirements for trademarks?

  • Arbitrary, fanciful, or suggestive: If a mark is a part of one of these three categories, the mark is inherently distinctive.
  • Descriptive: A descriptive mark can only be trademarked if it has taken on a second meaning.
  • Generic: Marks that are generic are never trademarked.

What are the benefits of registering a trademark?

  • A Federal Trademark Registration Protects Against Infringement.
  • A Federal Trademark Registration Provides Nationwide Validity.
  • A Federal Trademark Registration is a Valuable Asset.
  • Unique Trademarks Helps Customers Find You.

What are the five steps in registering a trademark?

  1. Think of a trademark that identifies with the goods you are offering or that is unique.
  2. Search the USPTO trademark database.
  3. File your application with the USPTO.
  4. Pay the processing fee.
  5. Keep track of the application process.

How long does a trademark take to get approved?

Usually, the process takes 12 to 18 months. Registering your trademark is a complex procedure that involves your application moving through various stages. Learning about each stage in the process will help you understand why getting a trademark takes as long as it does.

What can I do with a trademark?

A trademark protects a good or service offered by a company from infringement or damage of reputation by another company. With a trademark, you have legal recourse to sue another company that uses your likeness to further their own business ventures. This includes both registered and unregistered trademarks.

Who does a trademark protect?

A trademark typically protects brand names and logos used on goods and services. A copyright protects an original artistic or literary work. A patent protects an invention.

What can you not trademark?

  • Proper names or likenesses without consent from the person.
  • Generic terms, phrases, or the like.
  • Government symbols or insignia.
  • Vulgar or disparaging words or phrases.
  • The likeness of a U.S. President, former or current.
  • Immoral, deceptive, or scandalous words or symbols.
  • Sounds or short motifs.

How do I protect my business name?

Trademark. A trademark can protect the name of your business, goods, and services at a national level. Trademarks prevent others in the same (or similar) industry in the United States from using your trademarked names.

What's the difference between a trademark and a registered trademark?

What is Trademark vs. Registered? The trademark symbol (TM) is a mark that companies often use on a logo, name, phrase, word, or design that represents the business. The registered symbol (R) represents a mark that is a registered trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

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How to register or trademark a name

Comment by Pearl Stravinski

trademark theft cost small businesses over 300 billion dollars a year I know so let me show you how to register your trademark step number one create unique words or a symbol as your trademark what can be trademarked any name symbol slogan design that is uniquely identified with your product or service people often use the word trademark to refer to both trademarks and service marks technically a trademark is for your goods whereas a service mark is for your commercial services why should you trademark two reasons it keeps customers who had good experiences with your product or service coming back for more it also helps them find your product by finding that logo or that name or that symbol that is trademarked and identifies your unique product or services in reality coke may be indistinguishable to your taste buds from other carbonated drinks however you always order a coke because you remember how good it tasted after you scored your first touchdown you also trademark to prevent others from taking your particular mark and then trying to use that mark to sell their own goods and services it's very likely that if Pepperidge Farms did not trademark its name someone would steal it and attempt to trick customers into buying their own crackers instead of Pepperidge Farms while some of us will create a unique design as our trademark that no one has ever thought of some of us want a trademark a word phrase that maybe someone has thought of and previously registered so it is really smart to research whether or not your word phrase if you have a word phrase has been used before and previously registered there are three different types of research to perform to determine whether or not the word phrase you on a trademark has been used before or as previously registered but before we get there here's when you may want to get an attorney involved in the trademark process attorneys have access to very sophisticated professional databases that provide very timely and accurate information about pending trademark applications so if you have the resources you make and are delegating the research process to them however if you're a do-it-yourselfer like me here's how to research whether or not pending trademark applications are in the computer system first it's really easy perform a Google search and determine whether or not the words you want a trademark appear in business anywhere else second go to who is ICANN org and do a search and find out whether or not the words you want a trademark appear in domain names in the world the last part of the research happens at the website for the US Patent and Trademark Office you use a system that they have it's free to use called tests trademark electronic search system you use the system determine out whether or not there are pending trademark applications in America for the words you want a trademark test is really easy to use simply go to the website for the USPTO gov hover over the trademarks tab click on searching trademarks scroll down to search trademark database you click there move down to basic word mark search and then you click there then you go into the search term field and you type in the words that you want to be trademarked I previously entered what a feeling because I was pretending like I was selling a online product like an online vitamin and I can see here that there's at least one application for this mark that is live in other words it's pending when it says dead then the mark has been abandoned and is available you use the basic word mark search when you're trying to trademark words however when you want a trademark a design you have to use the design mark search and I made a video about how to use that design word mark search and you can find the link to that video in the description section below if you do not see in this screen that the words that you want to use as your trademark has a live application pending then you're looking good for a trademark and you can move on to the next step but before we get there let's take a quick break we've been talking about a lot of complex subjects do you want to trademark a product or a service if you want to trademark a product then write trademark in the comments if you want to trademark a service then write service mark in the comments below okay let's get back to the steps step number three use your trademark to lock in your trademark you actually have to use the words in the symbol in your online business in America once a business starts to use a distinctive name or symbol immediately and automatically has the right to prevent others from using that distinctive name or symbol basically the rule is use it or lose it how do you use a trademark well first your trademark has to be used in your actual business second you have to display the mark so that it's physically associated with the particular product or service that you are going to sell so that could be like a label or a tag perhaps the trademark appears on your website step number four register your trademark once you have used your trademark your next step is to protect it under federal law by officially registering it where do you register it by going back to the USPTO gov website under the trademarks tab go to apply online click on initial application forms there's three different types of application forms I use the TE a s RF at this time of the video it costs $50 more than the cheapest application but I don't want to go through the goods and services listing and I really don't mind communicating with the USPTO through email and online correspondence when you get to the applications scroll down and check no an attorney is not filing this application then you click continue at the bottom here you fill up the applicant contact information remember applicant means the owner of the mark not the person filling out the form so if you want your business to own the mark you should enter in the business name as the applicant after you're done filling out the contact information click continue and you arrive at the mark information screen you click on standard characters and then you enter in the trademark phrase and maybe you get a preview it like I did here then you click continue next is the good service information screen click on add goods and services then type in the basic category for your product click on go then you get this listing of all these different types of related products in this example I'm seeking at trademark for cornbread and so I clicked the cornbread box and hit inserted checked entries then you just click on the bottom continue you don't need to identify the filing basis then it's continue again this takes you to the final screens of the trademark application you enter in your payment information and then you submit the trademark application form and there you have it you did it your trademark application is submitted step number five wait for official registration the next step in the process is actually waiting waiting for the notice of publication if you get that then you know your trademark application was properly prepared when you get the notice of publicatio

Thanks for your comment Pearl Stravinski, have a nice day.
- Jarrod Langwell, Staff Member

Comment by Jonah

hi everyone I'm attorney aid in Durham with 180 lock Oh in Denver Colorado and you're watching all up in your business in this episode of all up in your business we're going to talk about the steps to take to trademark a name a business name or a product or service name and these steps are also going to apply to trademarking a logo but there are a few little differences if you're doing a logo versus trying to trademark a name but first before we get into it huge announcement coming at you March 4th is brandish DIY your trademark application during this one-hour webinar and mini workshop I'm going to teach you step by step how to prepare for complete and submit a trademark application without a lawyer and registration opens soon so if you want to learn the exact steps to take to file a trademark application without a lawyer check the description below for a link to get on the waitlist and to get some special early bird discount opportunities - all right let's talk about how to trademark a name the first step before you go trade marking anything is make sure it's something that's worth trademarking what makes a name more or less worth trade marking it really depends on how strong or weak it is a weak trademark is one that is more generic or common or descriptive versus a strong trademark which is something that's very arbitrary or very distinctive very creative and so the stronger your trademark is the stronger the trademark registration is going to be so if you have a really weak trademark something that typically makes it weak is if it's very descriptive of your goods or your services or if it's primarily your last name something like that makes a trademark on the weaker side and with a weak trademark if you register it all you have is a registered weak trademark and your trademark rights will ruffle to that if you have a weak generic trademark name your rights to enforce that trademark are gonna be somewhat limited and weaker versus if you have a very arbitrary name that's a stronger trademark then your registered trademark rights are gonna be a lot stronger to a few examples of very strong trademarks are like Google Google wasn't even a word until Google came out and created it so any like brand new word or creating a new word creating a new sound combining words to create something new that's the best thing you can do is create a brand new word or a brand new trademark that no one's ever seen before that's gonna make it stronger versus a weaker trademark so if we've decided that it's worth pursuing a trademark registration the next thing we want to do is make sure it's available to even register and use in the US a good first place to start with searching for your trademark availability is of course Google or your favorite search engine type in the trademark that you're looking to register and see what comes up if there's a bunch of other business listings for similar types of products or services if the exact trademark that you want comes up a lot or if there are a lot of similar variations then that might be a little red flag that maybe this trademark has already taken or if it's not taken necessarily registered if there's a lot of competition with that trademark that's going to affect how strong and distinctive your trademark is so if you're seeing a lot of similar variations of your trademark or identical trademarks then you might want to think about how that will impact your registration and then after doing a Google search you can also do a search on the Whois database to see what kind of domain name registrations already exists that incorporate your trademark or something similar to it and then the USP tA-o has a really good search database available - this allows you to search for pending trademark applications and registered trademarks that might be identical or similar to yours so if you go to the USPTO s website its and you'll navigate to their tests tes s system and this is where you're gonna do that search and you'll usually be able to do just a basic word search for your name now this is where the difference comes in if you're trying to trademark a logo then you'll want to do a design search which is a bit more complicated than just a basic word search so here you can type in the trademark name that you're wanting to use for this example I'm gonna type in all up in your business and then we'll see what comes up so let's say you were wanting to register your trademark all up in your business for your local ice cream shop we see here there is an active live registration for all up in yo business so what's important to note if you do find trademarks that are identical to yours or kind of similar to yours pay attention also to the goods or services that are associated with that registration there are two things primarily that go into trademark applications and trademark registrations the first is the similarity of the trademark itself the second is the similarity of the goods or services so if I'm opening an ice cream shop called all opinio business this current all up in your business registration is for like legal services and things that have absolutely nothing to do with ice cream or ice cream shops so with this finding I am relatively safe feeling like I can proceed with my application because there aren't any that are so similar in trademark and in the goods and services that it's likely it'll get through but if you do find something in the database that is kind of similar to your trademark and goods or services are somewhat related or if they're identical then again that's a red flag that you're going to want to take into consideration and maybe go back to the drawing board because if someone else already has that trademark registered in a very related category of goods or services that's going to impact how your application goes and whether or not you're going to get that registration you can also use some third-party trademark search tools there are companies out there that will do a very thorough trademark search these aren't lawyers or law offices they're just trademark search companies that will search the USPTO and common-law usage and even international usage and then what they'll do is they'll compile all the information and give you typically this very large report summarizing what they found now if you're not a lawyer and you don't know how to actually interpret and analyze those results it may not do you a whole lot of good to pay for that kind of a search but if you can figure out how to analyze what you're looking at then using one of those services for a pretty extensive search is a good idea but really the best option is to use an attorney to help you with this clearance search because the attorney is gonna not only know what to search for but they're also going to understand what they're looking at and they're gonna know how to analyze that in the context of your trademark and determine what it actually means for the fate of your trademark application so if we've determined we want to file the application and the trademark is available the next step is to start using the trademark now ok

Thanks Jonah your participation is very much appreciated
- Jarrod Langwell

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