Registering a trademark is an important step for all business concerns. A registered trademark ensures that no other party makes profits on the name or logo of your firm. There are several small business owners who wish to get their trademark registered but do not know the exact process.
Here are 5 easy steps that any business owner can follow to register a trademark:
The first step towards registering your trademark is to understand the exact process. To register a trademark one must file an application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (www.uspto.gov), also called the USPTO. A trademark is considered to be a registered trademark only when it has been approved by the USPTO.
Prior filing a trademark application with the USPTO, you must conduct a trademark search to ensure no one else has filed the same or similar trademark. Even though you can conduct a trademark search yourself, it is always better to hire a trademark attorney to do the search for you. This is because the USPTO database can turn out to be extremely tricky to search if you are not an experienced searcher.
Once you are sure that no other firm has a similar or same trademark, complete the application for your trademark online at USPTO. There are several technical and legal requirements often hidden in the application that can be understood only by someone who has experience in this respective field. In case of incorrect application, your trademark could be denied registration. Hence, prefer hiring an experienced trademark attorney to help you with drafting the application.
Get your trademark application reviewed and approved by a U.S. government attorney. There could be chances that the trademark examining attorney may ask you questions or may demand any clarifications on your trademark application by issuing an “Office Action” on your trademark application. Once an Office Action is issued, you will have six months from the date of issuance to respond. If you do not respond within the specified period your application will be abandoned.
Finally, if after 8 to12 months of initially filing your trademark application the U.S. Government approves your trademark application, you will receive a trademark registration certificate from the United States Patent and Trademark Office. This trademark registration certificate will include certain instructions about the requirements that you must fulfill to keep your trademark registration active.