Trademark Attorney Services
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Tuscaloosa, Alabama Businesses Use Cohn Legal for Trademark Services
Cohn Legal, PLLC is a law firm focused on providing clients in Tuscaloosa, Alabama with outstanding legal counsel and support around trademark law and intellectual property rights. Our trademark attorneys are available for transactional work, but truly relish the opportunity to help small businesses, startups, and entrepreneurs create and protect their brands. On the most fundamental level, our main goal is to provide clients with exceptional legal services at cost-effective rates.
Top 5 Questions Tuscaloosa Businesses Have About Obtaining a Trademark
What is a clearance search?
A trademark attorney will conduct a trademark clearance search to determine if your desired trademark is available for use or if by using it, you’re infringing on someone else’s trademark rights.
When a trademark attorney will search these following sources during a trademark search:
- The database of federally registered trademarks maintained by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
- Trademark registration databases maintained by states.
- Source that list “common law” trademarks
- The internet
Will the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) help protect my trademark against infringement?
The USPTO will not help protect your trademark against infringement. It is solely your responsibility as the owner of the trademark to monitor the marketplace and take action against those who may be infringing on your trademark. Some business owners decide to hire a trademark attorney to help them monitor the marketplace for infringement of their trademark rights and give advice on how you should proceed if an infringement is found.
Why must my trademark attorney be licensed to practice law in the United States?
The USPTO specifies that only attorneys licensed to practice law in the United States can represent you in trademark transactions or proceedings before the USPTO. Attorneys who are not U.S-licensed are not allowed by the USPTO to represent you in trademark dealings because they may give you inaccurate information about your trademark application which, in turn, could invalidate your application or cause your application to be canceled.
I’ve already applied for trademark registration. Is it too late to seek guidance from a trademark attorney?
In general, the earlier in the process you hire a trademark attorney, the better it is. However, there’s never a bad time to hire a trademark attorney. If you already submitted your application to the USPTO, then your attorney can respond to any office actions or give advice if your application is rejected. If your trademark is approved, then your attorney can monitor the marketplace to ensure no one is infringing on your trademark rights.
What is the importance of a priority date?
Your “priority date” is the date that you submit your trademark application to the USPTO. Your application will be given priority over all other trademark applications that come in after that date. This is another reason to start the trademark registration process as soon as possible. The priority date gives your mark some limited protections, even while your application is pending.
Why Trademark Registration Matters for Tuscaloosa Businesses
Tuscaloosa, Alabama is a vibrant city that’s more than 200 years old! The residents of this diverse city embrace their roots, but also look to the future restaurants, museums, live music venues, and theaters that have sprung up in recent decades turning Tuscaloosa into a bona fide tourist destination.
Entrepreneurs in Tuscaloosa are proud to contribute to this storied city’s continued progress and economic growth by starting new business ventures in the downtown area situated near the Black Warrior River. These startups have a “do-it-yourself” work ethic that is admirable. However, when it comes to trademark registration, they definitely should work with a U.S.-licensed trademark attorney.
Imagine the following: Jason and Paul are friends who met while attending the University of Alabama. Both have had dreams of going into business for themselves and now that they’re college graduates, they decide to go into business together.
Jason and Paul both have experience with installing above-ground pools because of their summer jobs over the past 4 years. So, they decide to start their own pool installation company called University Pools.
The two friends know that they can’t use that name for their business if someone else is using it. They do a quick search on Google for the name of the business and find no matches in the area. Feeling excited, the boys get to work.
They develop a business plan, order marketing materials, develop a website, and open up social media accounts. They even buy a used work van and have their business name and logo airbrushed on the side. Finally, they advertise their services in local papers and on various pool care websites and blogs.
After a few weeks of advertising, calls start to come in. Within 2 months, Jason and Paul have more work than they can handle. They start talking about hiring some employees to help with the load.
Unfortunately, their dreams of business ownership are about to dry up. Jason and Paul receive a cease-and-desist letter from a pool installation and maintenance company in Birmingham, Alabama. The Birmingham company has a name that’s very similar to the name of Jason and Paul’s business. However, the Birmingham company trademarked the name of their business several years ago. That means they have every right to demand that Jason and Paul halt their operations and not restart until they have renamed their business. The letter also threatens legal action if the two friends don’t comply. Jason and Paul know that rebranding will be an expensive process and they aren’t sure if they’ll be able to keep their business afloat.
Simply conducting a Google search to find if your desired trademark is available for use is not sufficient. Most internet searches will identify exact trademark matches, such as identical business names or identical product names. Most trademark issues, however, come from your desired trademark being similar to, but not an exact match of, an existing mark.
The lesson here is to never rely on a Google search to determine if your desired trademark is available for use. The only way that you can be absolutely sure your desired trademark is available for use is by having the trademark attorneys at Cohn Legal Group conduct a comprehensive clearance search on your behalf.
If you have questions about trademark registration, then contact the attorneys at Cohn Legal for a no-cost trademark consultation.
** Cohn Legal, PLLC is not located in Tuscaloosa and yet it can assist businesses from Alabama in registering a federal Trademark because trademarks are governed under federal law.
Trademarks Services for Tuscaloosa Businesses
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.