How Do You Protect a Trademark?
In addition to all the other daily concerns of operating your business, you need to constantly be aware of the threat to your intellectual property. You have worked long and hard to build your business, the last thing you want is to be undermined by others looking to benefit from your efforts. This is why trademark protection is so invaluable.
Trademark protection is a relatively simple way to ensure you retain the legal right to the intellectual property you have created. Here are a few key points to understand with regard to trademark law.
Intent to Use a Trademark
In the time before you have introduced your products or services to the marketplace, you still want to protect your work. In this case, The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) offers the choice to file an Intent to Use (ITU) trademark registration while you are still in development. Once you finally do introduce your product or service to the marketplace, your trademark registration will be effective dating back to when you filed the ITU.
Taking Your Trademark to Market
The only requirement for you to protect your trademark is for you to actively use it. This does not mean that you need to make any sales of product or service. Simply offering them on the open market will constitute active use. Once you have done that, you may register your trademark with the USPTO.
Stopping Infringements on Your Trademark
After submitting the registration, the work is only half over. You need to be constantly vigilant of people using your intellectual property, whether consciously or unconsciously. Many of these cases can be settled with a simple cease and desist letter, as most people prefer to avoid litigation. Some people are not so reasonable, unfortunately.
Taking Trademark Infringement to Court
If you are forced to take the drastic step of bringing a trademark dispute to federal court, you should have two goals: stop the infringer from using your intellectual property any longer, and recoup any financial losses your business might have incurred.
Finding a Trademark Law Firm You Trust
Filing trademarks and protecting your trademarked property is a tiring and confusing proposition, but one that is well worth the effort. At Stibbs & Co., we can bring our many decades of business law expertise to bear for you and your company in order to streamline the trademarking process and protect your trademarks from infringement. Contact us today, and allow us to make this complicated process simpler for you.