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How do I register a trademark?
Before our trademark attorneys register a trademark, we conduct a thorough trademark search to assess the likelihood of your trademark registration applicable being successful. Remember, your trademark cannot be “confusingly similar” to another when used on “related goods or services.” This step is extremely important--the USPTO does not refund their fees if your application is rejected.
Once the trademark search has been completed and we decide to move forward, we submit the trademark registration application to the USPTO via their Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS). In order to do so, we need:
If you haven’t started selling goods or services yet, our trademark attorneys can file the trademark registration on an “intent to use” basis. The process is very similar, but there will be some additional filing requirements and filing fees.
How long does the trademark registration process take?
Once the trademark registration is submitted, it takes the USPTO approximately 3-6 months to assign an examining attorney to review the application, conduct a trademark search, and decide whether your application meets the legal requirements. If the examining attorney finds any issues with your application, they will issue an Office Action giving you 6 months to respond. If there are no issues, then the trademark is approved for publication, which gives the general public 30 days to object to the registration of your trademark or file a request for extension of time. Assuming there are no objections, then the USPTO typically issues the registration certificate about 11 weeks after publication.
If your application was filed on an “intent to use” basis, then about 8 weeks after publication, the USPTO will issue a Notice of Allowance (NOA). The NOA gives you 6 months to either file a Statement of Use showing you are actually using the trademark to sell goods or services or request an additional 6 month time period to start using the mark. You can request an extension up to 5 times, giving you a total of 36 months to start using the trademark.
Altogether, the trademark registration process typically takes a year or more, especially if there are opposition proceedings, competing applications, or you file on an “intent to use” basis. Our trademark attorneys help businesses and nonprofit organizations navigate this complex proceeding so that you can focus on building your brand. And once you have your trademark registration, we assist with maintaining your trademark and protecting it from trademark infringement.