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Baltimore, Maryland Businesses Use Cohn Legal for Trademark Services
Cohn Legal, PLLC started as an auxiliary branch of an international Intellectual Property firm that has provided legal protection to some of the biggest technology companies in the world. Today, Cohn Legal, PLLC is servicing clients in Baltimore, Maryland, the broader Tri-State area, and countries around the globe.
Top 20 Questions Baltimore, Maryland Businesses Have About Obtaining a Trademark
If I Only Provide My Services in Baltimore, Maryland, Can I Still Obtain a Federal Trademark?
This is an excellent question. Ultimately, to obtain a federal trademark, it must be used in “interstate-commerce” meaning that your services must be provided in at least two States. If you are presently only providing your services in Baltimore, Maryland, we can simply file an Intent to Use application; The intent-to-use application allows the applicant to reserve the right to use the trademark once it is ready to be used in inter-state-commerce.
I Have Expanded My Business and Now Serve Customers Outside of Baltimore, Maryland – Can I Now File my Trademark Statement of Use?
Once your trademark is in use in inter-state commerce (meaning that you are selling your products/services to customers outside of the State of Baltimore), you may file a Statement of Use with the USPTO to complete the registration process. If the statement of use is accepted, the USPTO will issue a registration certificate for the trademark. What is a Statement of Use? Simply,
The statement of use must include a verified specimen showing the trademark being used in commerce, the date of the first use of the trademark in commerce, and a description of the goods or services associated with the trademark. The statement of use allows the USPTO to determine if the trademark is being used in compliance with the requirements of the Lanham Act and if it is eligible for registration.
If the statement of use is accepted, the USPTO will issue a registration certificate for the trademark, which provides the owner with exclusive rights to use the mark in connection with the identified goods or services.
As Far As I Know, No Other Businesses in Baltimore Are Using My Name. Do I Need To Conduct A Trademark Search Before Filing My Application?
While there is no mandate that says you must conduct a trademark search before submitting your trademark application, it is undoubtedly wise to do so. Remember, you are about to file a Federal Trademark Application which means that even though no other businesses in Baltimore, Maryland may be using your name, it is possible that your name is in use in other States. A proper trademark search will help uncover any sufficiently similar trademarks, which may block the approval of your desired trademark.
How Long Does The Trademark Application Process Take?
It is important that you file your trademark application as soon as possible in order to obtain the earliest possible filing date.
Once you submit your application, you should hear back from the USPTO within 3 to 6 months. If your trademark is found to be eligible for registration, then it will take about an additional 2 months for it to be fully approved. So the entire process could take 5 to 8 months, roughly.
If your trademark is found to be ineligible for registration, the entire process could take much longer as you address issues that were outlined by the USPTO.
Can I Request An Expedited Approval Of My Trademark Registration?
Generally, you can’t request an expedited approval of your mark. However, are certain circumstances in which the application process can be expedited. Specifically, in matters of litigation, the possibility of trademark infringement, or when there exists a unique need to obtain a U.S. trademark to procure a foreign registration. If any of these scenarios apply to you, then it’s best to consult with a trademark attorney before requesting an expedited review.
What is TEAS?
If you are a Baltimore, Maryland business owner and are ready to file a federal trademark application, you will be using TEAS. TEAS stands for the Trademark Electronic Application System. It is an online system developed by the USPTO that allows applicants to file and manage their trademark applications electronically. The TEAS system offers various application options, including TEAS Plus, TEAS RF (Reduced Fee), and TEAS Regular, each with its own requirements and benefits. TEAS Plus is a streamlined application process that requires the applicant to meet certain strict requirements and includes a lower filing fee than the TEAS Regular option. TEAS RF provides a lower filing fee than the TEAS Regular option but requires the applicant to meet certain additional requirements. The TEAS Regular option offers more flexibility in terms of application requirements but has a higher filing fee than the other options. The TEAS system also allows for online management of trademark applications, including checking the status of an application, submitting responses to Office Actions, and paying maintenance fees.TEAS is easy to use and gives you 60 minutes to complete your application, which should be more than enough time.
What is a trademark Office Action?
If the examining attorney at the USPTO decides that your desired trademark is ineligible for registration, or if the examiner requires additional information before deciding on the mark’s eligibility you will receive an Office Action. A trademark office action is a written communication from the trademark examining attorney at the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office) to the applicant of a trademark application. The office action notifies the applicant of any issues or objections that the examining attorney has with the application.
An Office Action lists the reasons that your trademark application was rejected, which may include:
- Amendment of the identification of goods/services in an application required
- Substitute specimen required
- Likelihood of confusion
- Descriptiveness or misdescriptiveness
- Geographic significance
There are two types of trademark office actions: non-final and final. A non-final office action identifies any issues or objections that the examining attorney has with the application and provides the applicant with an opportunity to address and resolve these issues. The applicant must respond to the non-final office action within six months of the date of issuance.
What Should I Do If I Receive An Office Action On My Trademark Application?
If you receive an Office Action, then contact a trademark attorney. Office Actions can be complicated and your trademark lawyer will help you determine the exact nature of the Office Action and what to do about it. If the issues are substantive, then your trademark attorney will need to draft a legal argument addressing the issues raised in the Office Action. If you decide to pursue your Office Action, one of our Baltimore Trademark Lawyers will will draft a response and send it to you for your review and approval. It will then be submitted to the USPTO within the allotted time to respond. If the examining attorney is satisfied with the applicant’s response to the non-final office action, the application may be approved for publication. However, if the issues or objections are not resolved to the examining attorney’s satisfaction, a final office action may be issued. A final office action is issued when the examining attorney determines that the applicant’s response to the non-final office action is insufficient or the issues or objections are not resolvable. The final office action is a final rejection of the trademark application, and the applicant must respond within six months or the application will be abandoned.
Is There A Difference Between a Trademark and a Service Mark?
This is quite a common question, and ultimately, the answer is that there’s not much difference. A trademark is a word, logo, slogan, sound, and/or design that when attached to a product, enables a consumer to identify the company which produces the product. A service mark is a word, logo, slogan, sound, and/or design that when attached to a service, enables a consumer to identify the company which produces the service. Thus, depending on what type of Baltimore, Maryland business you are and the nature of the goods/services that you are selling, you mark will either be a “trade mark” or “service mark”.
How Can I Determine If a Trademark Is Available?
A comprehensive trademark search is recommended to determine if a mark is available. This search involves reviewing existing registrations, pending applications, and common law usage to assess potential conflicts.
What Is A Trademark Clearance Search?
A trademark clearance search is conducted to determine the availability of a proposed mark before filing a trademark application. It helps identify potential conflicts with existing marks.
What Is The Official Gazette?
In the context of the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office), the Official Gazette is a weekly publication that contains information related to trademarks and patents. Specifically, the Trademark Official Gazette is published every Tuesday and includes information about newly registered trademarks, trademarks that have been renewed, and trademarks that are available for opposition. The Trademark Official Gazette serves as a public notice of new and renewed trademarks, providing the public with an opportunity to oppose a trademark registration if they believe it may cause confusion with their own trademark. Once a trademark is published in the Official Gazette, interested parties have 30 days to file an opposition. In addition to information about trademark registrations, the Trademark Official Gazette may also contain other information related to trademark law and practice, including changes to trademark rules and procedures, notices of public meetings, and other announcements. The Patent Official Gazette, on the other hand, is published every Tuesday and contains information related to patents, including notices of new patents, patent reexaminations, and patent assignments. Both the Trademark Official Gazette and the Patent Official Gazette are important resources for anyone involved in trademark or patent law, including attorneys, applicants, and trademark or patent owners.
What is a Trademark’s Specimen?
A specimen is a sample of how you intend to use your trademark that you submit to the USPTO as part of your trademark application. It is submitted as part of a trademark application to the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office) and serves as evidence that the trademark is being used in connection with the goods or services listed in the application. The purpose of the trademark specimen is to demonstrate to the USPTO that the trademark is being used in a way that identifies and distinguishes the applicant’s goods or services from those of others. The specimen must show the trademark in actual use, and not just in a mock-up or drawing. The type of specimen that is required depends on the nature of the goods or services for which the trademark is being used. For example, if the trademark is being used in connection with a physical product, a specimen may be a photograph or a label showing the trademark affixed to the product. If the trademark is being used in connection with a service, the specimen may be a brochure or advertisement that shows the trademark being used to promote the service. If you’re unsure what you should submit, then consult a Baltimore trademark attorney.
Can I Use A Trademark Without Registering It?
Yes, trademark rights can be established through common law usage without formal registration. However, federal registration provides additional benefits and protection.
Can I Trademark a Phrase?
Yes, it is possible to trademark a phrase if it meets certain criteria. In order to be eligible for trademark protection, a phrase must be distinctive and used in commerce to identify and distinguish the source of the goods or services from those of others – if the phrase is too “common”, like, “I Love Baltimore”, it will not operate as a “source identifier” and therefore cannot be trademarked.
Can I Trademark a Logo?
Yes, you can protect your logo with a trademark. To protect your logo with a trademark, you will need to file a trademark application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The application process typically involves submitting a description of the logo, the actual logo in a JPG format and evidence of its use in commerce, as well as paying a filing fee.
Can I Trademark A Color?
Trademarking a color is possible in certain circumstances, but it can be challenging. Generally, the color must have acquired distinctiveness and be inherently associated with a specific product or service.
Can I Transfer My Trademark To Someone Else?
Yes, trademark ownership can be transferred through an assignment agreement, allowing another party to become the new owner of the mark.
Can I License My Trademark To Others?
Yes, trademark owners can grant licenses to others, allowing them to use the mark under specific conditions while retaining ownership and control.
How Do I Enforce My Trademark Rights?
Trademark enforcement involves monitoring the marketplace for potential infringers and taking appropriate legal action to protect your rights, such as sending cease and desist letters or filing infringement lawsuits.
Why Trademark Registration Matters for Baltimore Businesses
The economy is booming in Baltimore, which makes it a great place to open a new business. If you’re an entrepreneur in the Baltimore area, make sure you don’t overlook trademark registration. It’s perhaps the most important step you can take to protect your brand and your business. Imagine the following: Penny decides to open up a paint your own pottery studio in downtown Baltimore. There’s nothing like it in town and she thinks it could be very popular. She envisions herself teaching classes, hosting kids’ birthday parties and just letting people explore their creative side.
She chooses the name Paint with Penny as the name of her studio. She Googles the name and sees that there are no other studios with that name in Maryland. Feeling excited, she gets to work.
Penny leases studio space, invests in signage, creates a website, and even orders smocks featuring her logo. Finally, the day of her grand opening arrives.
Penny’s business is quite successful at first. She’s booking several parties each weekend and hosting adult classes during the week. She’s seriously considering hiring some help when she gets some disappointing news. Penny receives a cease-and-desist letter in the mail.
A small arts and crafts manufacturer in Virginia Beach has a line of paints called Paints by Penny. They’ve trademarked the name and believe that the name of Penny’s studio, Paint with Penny, is too similar to the name of their product. Penny will have to close her shop and not reopen until she renames her business, which will be an expensive undertaking,
If you are starting a new business venture, then trademark registration should be your top priority. Never rely on a Google search to see if the name you want for your business is available.
If you have questions about trademark registration, then contact the attorneys at Cohn Legal for a no-cost trademark consultation.
** Cohn Legal, PLLC provides trademark services to businesses all of the united States and can assist businesses from Maryland in registering a federal Trademark because trademarks are governed under federal law.
Trademarks Services for Baltimore Businesses
- Trademark Search Services
- Trademark Application Filing
- Trademark Infringement Defense
- Trademark a Name
- Trademark a Phrase
- Trademark Cease and Desist Letters
- Trademark Office Action Response
- Trademark Abandonment
Submit Your Trademark
Now in 4 Easy Steps
Complete the Trademark Registration Form.
Our IP Attorneys will run a search of your trademark in the USPTO.
We draft your TM Application and send it to you for your Review.
We File the Application with the USPTO.