How Can I Obtain Trademark Protection in New Jersey?
There are many people around the world who come up with different intellectual properties and want to present them to the world. When they want to bring this idea to life, it is important that it is protected. There are different ways this can be obtained, including trademark protection. In doing so, it can be beneficial to retain the services of an experienced New Jersey intellectual property attorney for assistance.
What is a Trademark?
Simply put, a trademark is a word, symbol, name, sound, or device that is used by companies in order to separate them from other businesses. This can be vital to their success, as it distinguishes them as a brand. A trademark can often be seen in specific logos or items to show that no other entity owns it or can use it unless they are given the authority to do so. For example, fast-food chains such as McDonald’s and Burger King have different logos so that people do not confuse them with one another.
Obtaining Trademark Protection
When a person wants to obtain a trademark, they are required to file the necessary paperwork with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Once this is done, the Office can grant national coverage as long as the trademark does not have any opposition. It is important to know that, as many are filed, it takes time for the Office to begin the process of going through an application. During this time, the attorney examining the document will communicate with the applicant’s attorney in order to share any thoughts or opinions through an “office action.” Usually, most trademark requests are granted with only a few adjustments made. The applicant has a period of six months to respond with any issues regarding the trademark.
Part of obtaining the trademark is a process called “publication for opposition.” A trademark may be approved, but it must then be published in the official gazette. This allows the public 30 days to oppose the trademark. If none arise, an official Notice of Allowance can be issued and a Statement of Use will be filed. The protection is finally in place once the trademark certificate is received.
What are Trademark Registers?
The Lanham Act in 1946 created registers for trademarks. This helps businesses protect their intellectual property under two different registers:
- Principal Register: Trademarks that take on a second meaning over time. With this, a trademark has constructive use and constructive notice. If this is obtained, other people cannot use similar marks.
- Supplemental Register: Your trademark distinguishes your goods or services from others. With this, people are not given any rights outside of common law. Opposition proceedings do not occur but the protection can be canceled by the court at any time.
Contact our Firm
The Law Offices of Richard E. Novak, LLC has over 25 years of experience helping clients through tough times when they need it most. If you need assistance with any intellectual property, traffic violations, or business law matters, our firm is here to help. It is critical that you pick the right attorney who can protect your rights. Contact The Law Offices of Richard E. Novak, LLC for a consultation.