There are a number of reasons someone would seek a trademark attorney in the US. Trademark attorneys work with business owners and entrepreneurs in all things regarding trademarks, including:
- Deciding on the most powerful mark
- Enforcing their trademark rights
- Stopping others from using your trademark or one “confusingly similar” to your own
Once your trademark is official with the USPTO, it’s up to you to enforce it – they won’t do that for you.
As with all areas of the law, it’s always better to have an attorney to provide legal advice, guidance, defense, or to file suit if necessary.
If you require the services of a US trademark attorney, MZJ can help.
What Can Be Trademarked?
A lot of things can be trademarked, even colors and sounds (for example, the color Tiffany Blue or the sound when your Apple Computer turns on).
A trademark can be a:
- Expression (for example, Mr. T’s infamous catchphrase “I pity the fool” was officially trademarked in 2011)
- Word (or multiple words or phrases)
- Product packaging (like the Hershey’s Kiss wrapper)
All of these examples can fall into the category of intellectual property and thus be trademarked.
The owner of a trademark can be a person, business, or legal entity of some kind.
What Can a Trademark Attorney Do for Me?
Trademark attorneys in the US and across the country help their clients in the following ways:
- Providing legal advice on the selection of a new trademark, the best use of trademarks, and matters of trademark infringement
- Helping with the process of registering a trademark, including filing trademark applications
- Handling invalidations, oppositions, assignments, and revocations of trademarks
- Carrying out trademark searches
- Showing problems that may arise with certain trademark registrations
- Evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of trademarks
- Helping clients get the most protection for their mark
- Helping with any issues that may arise after a trademark application has been filed
- Helping with trademark enforcement
When You Need a Trademark Attorney
There are many situations in which one would be wise to hire a trademark attorney. For example:
- You’ve decided on a mark and want to trademark it. However, you aren’t sure it is authentic or unique enough to avoid running into issues of trademark infringement, or having it rejected by the USPTO.
- You have questions about trademark law or the trademark registration process.
- You intend to file trademarks internationally and require someone with a comprehensive knowledge of foreign trademark laws.
- You aren’t sure how to respond to a refusal to register (when the USPTO says “no”) or an Office action (a document from a patent examiner).
- You’ve discovered someone using your trademark without your permission. As stated above, it’s up to you to enforce your trademark, which usually starts with a cease and desist letter backed with the threat of legal action. If a lawsuit needs to be filed, it will be far more effective with a trademark attorney involved.
- Someone has sent you a cease and desist letter for trademark infringement and may be pursuing legal action.