The trademark registration process is not a very difficult process; however, it can be a long process. The typical process usually takes about 10 months, and if there are any errors or mistakes in the registration, it can take more than a year to process. Mistakes on an application can be costly so it is important to hire an experienced attorney to assist with the process and identify any issues prior to filing the trademark, to save you time and money.
The first step to filing a trademark is to run a trademark search. Doing a trademark search ensures that you are not filing a trademark that already exists, or that is too similar to an existing trademark. If the trademark is too similar or already exists, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will reject the trademark. This will delay the process significantly.
You will also need to identify if you are registering a service or product. If you are offering a service, USPTO requires a service mark registration, and if you are offering a product, the USPTO only requires a trademark registration.
The following is a list of the information you will need to provide the attorney in order to register your trademark:
- Name of applicant
- Identify the nature of the applicant (ie: individual, company, or partnership, etc.)
- Applicant’s address
- Identify the mark to be registered (ie: logo, word, phrase, etc.)
- If a logo is being registered, a clear high resolution picture is needed
- Description of goods or services on which mark is being used or will be used
- If the mark is being currently used in commerce (if yes, the date is started being used and proof of use)
Once the trademark is registered, the USPTO gives your application a serial number and it is submitted to an examining attorney to review the application. This stage of the process can take a few months to complete. If the application is accepted, the USPTO will publish the trademark. At this time other companies or individuals have 30 days to oppose the trademark.
Retaining an experienced attorney to assist with the trademark registration process, it will ensure that a trademark application is done correctly to keep the cost at a minimum and keep the process timely.