If you are planning to trademark your logo, the first step to the process is to prepare yourself for it. The whole process can easily take an upward of six months and requires specialized expertise. Here’s how to trademark a logo.
Why is it so necessary and How to trademark a logo?
Well, for the obvious, if you don’t trademark your logo, you are vulnerable to theft. Anybody can copy your design and you would not have any right to bring them down. As a small business owner, who generated an exemplary design, put in so much money and time behind the design, you will not want to be blindsided by a lawsuit. In this dog eat dog world, you never know when someone takes your logo, brands it as their own, and in turn, slaps a lawsuit on you.
In order to save yourself from the nightmare and this common occurring. You need to call to trademark your logo. A trademark is a legal agreement that legally binds your logo only and only to you. Apart from trademarking services, you could also opt for an add-on trademark watch service. Trademark watch service monitors your brand for potential theft and allows you to respond to potential conflicts before they snowball into huge suits.
How to trademark a logo: Does a trademark only protect the logo design?
The purpose of trademarking is to protect your rights and distinguish your brand’s identity from others in the market. A trademark protects words, symbols, designs, or a combination of all of these elements. A logo is also what sets you apart and creates an identity for your brand. Other common elements protected by trademarks include company taglines, slogans, business names, etc.
Lets now get to the real juice: How to Trademark A Logo?
Ensure Your Logo Is Available: Conduct a trademark search
The first thing you can do you answer – How to trademark a logo? Is to create a logo that has never been seen before. However, this is a wide wide world and you can never be sure. Before venturing to anything else, you need to make sure that your logo design is actually available for trademarking and registering. For registering, a logo must be unique and not genetic or similar to any other logo.
Conduct a trademark search. Visit the United States Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS). TESS is an online database of each and every registered trademark or trademark applied for. Each record in TESS includes many elements and each element is a searchable piece of information. TESS lets you find any mark that you may have in common with other registered trademarks, and also specific marks if you know on or more elements.
How to trademark a logo: Secure rights to your logo
Once you are sure there exists no other design similar to yours that has already been registered, it is time for you to secure your logo rights! If you are a small business that serves only locally, you will have to secure the logo rights using your logo in the geographical area you serve. But if you are a globally delivering or cross-country or even a cross-state business, you will need to file to register your trademark with the Secretary of State in which you will be based.
The important point to note here is that this will provide you the trademark rights only for the particular state you register in. If you do happen to operate even out of other states, you will need to secure the rights of your logo through the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Ensure that you understand the design codes by using the USPTO Design Search Code Manual when you fill out the application form to secure your trademark rights.
How to trademark a logo –Almost There: Fill out an application form
As a process of trademarking, you will be required to fill out an initial form. This form can be filled online but you need to make sure that you thoroughly read and answer the questions on the form.
Trademark Watch Service
A lot of third party agencies offer a trademark watch service that keeps a watchful eye on the infringement of your trademarked logo as discussed before. This can be very beneficial as you might not be able to look out for your logo as professionals do.
Final Thoughts on How to trademark a logo?
The trademarking process of a logo can seem very tedious and in all fairness, is not a piece of cake either. However, as a saving grace, if you do invest some serious time, you will find all the information you will ever need on the trademark process at –
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