A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol, design, or a combination thereof, that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods of one party from those of another. A service mark is a word, phrase, symbol, design, or a combination thereof, that identifies and distinguishes the source of a service rather than goods. The term “trademark” is often used to refer to trademarks and service marks.
Understanding Trademarks and the Registration Process
There are many different types of trademarks, but the two most common are “standard character” marks, which are words or letters without any design element, and “stylized” or “design” marks, which include a logo or design.
A trademark can be registered with the United State Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the federal agency responsible for overseeing trademarks. The registration process is relatively simple and inexpensive, and it provides the trademark owner with several important benefits, including the exclusive right to use the trademark nationwide and the ability to bring a lawsuit if someone else uses the trademark without permission.
However, it is important to note that registering a trademark is not required to have trademark rights. Many people and businesses have valid trademark rights even though they have not registered their trademarks with the USPTO. These “common law” trademark rights arise automatically when someone uses a mark in commerce in connection with the sale of goods or services.
Several different factors must be considered to determine whether a particular mark is eligible for federal trademark registration. These factors include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Whether the mark is currently being used in commerce
- Whether the mark is distinctive
- Whether the mark is likely to confuse with another existing trademark
If you are considering registering a trademark, or if you have already registered a trademark and need to enforce your rights, it is important to consult with a qualified trademark attorney. A trademark attorney can help you navigate the registration process and can also help you enforce your rights if someone infringes on your trademark.
How a Competent Trademark Attorney Helps Businesses
A trademark attorney is an attorney who specializes in intellectual property law with an emphasis on trademarks. Trademark attorneys help their clients protect their brands by ensuring that their trademarks are properly registered and enforced. They also advise their clients on how to avoid infringing on other people’s trademarks.
If you have a brand that you want to protect, you should consider hiring a trademark attorney. A trademark attorney can help you choose a strong trademark that will be easy to register and enforce. They can also help you navigate the complex world of trademark law, and they can represent you in court if someone infringes on your trademark.
Even when you are starting a business, you should consider hiring a trademark attorney. A trademark attorney can help you choose a name and logo for your business that won’t infringe on other people’s trademarks. They can also help you register your business name and logo as trademarks and advise you on how to protect your trademarks from infringement.
The Trademark Help You Need
If you need a trademark attorney in Seattle, Bellevue, Bellingham, Tacoma, Olympia, or any other area in Washington State, look no further than Tim Billick and his firm TBillick Law PLLC. Tim has extensive experience in all aspects of trademark law and can help you with anything from filing a trademark application to enforcing your trademark rights.
Tim and our team will work with you to ensure your trademark is properly registered and protected. We will also help you to enforce your trademark rights if they are ever infringed upon. Tim is a highly skilled trademark attorney who is dedicated to protecting the intellectual property of his clients. Contact us today by calling 206-494-0020 or using our convenient online form to send a message to discuss your trademark needs.