The use of a trademark or trade name is a common way to make certain a product or name is identified with the correct company or organization, and is often a crucial element to a company’s overall branding strategy. The use of these marks and names has significant advantages for businesses, but also may carry some risk. At Sparkman + Foote LLP, we have attorneys who work nationally on trademark matters, helping our clients obtain a legally protectable mark, comply with the ongoing stringent rules and requirements of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), commercialize upon their brands, and defend against any potential infringement of their marks.
Obtaining a Valid Trademark:
Note that obtaining a business entity name filed with the secretary of state, or obtaining a domain name registered on the Internet provides trademark protection. At Sparkman + Foote LLP, our attorneys know that intellectual property law is often complicated, and dealing with the USPTO can be difficult. We are here to focus on the legal issues and help our clients navigate the system with simplicity and ease. Specifically, we assist clients and their marketing groups in understanding how to obtain or qualify for trademark protection, and the scope of protection. We also register or prosecute their trademarks with the USPTO and applicable state agencies. We provide guidance on how to select the defendable mark, and oversee the preliminary search process, which may include conducting in-house searches, or analyzing complicated and lengthy results from third party searches. We also register client’s trademarks to ensure all formal deadlines and requirements are met. In the case that the USTPO rejects or opposes a trademark, we also work through the appeals and defenses before the TTAB.
Continuing Trademark Protection:
Once our clients secure a valid trademark, certain actions must be taken to safeguard the mark. We counsel our clients on proper use and help ensure that it continues to be a defendable mark. Additionally, we help ensure that our clients make continual, yet, critical deadlines with the USPTO, in order to maintain their rights.
Trademark and trade name rights may also be licensed to allow one person to use another’s trademark or trade name. Our attorneys offer services to our clients regarding trademark-licensing requirements, and are experienced in negotiating, reviewing, and drafting trademark license agreements to assure Sparkman + Foote LLP’s clients are protected to the fullest extent, while commercializing upon their brand.