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No. Although our team includes patent attorneys and IP professionals, we are not a law firm. We are a foreign filing platform for patent owners and attorney firms. We are happy to answer questions on the trademark registration process, but we do not offer specific legal advice.
Registering a trademark is an important step in creating and protecting your brand. Having a registered trademark means that:

  • You have an exclusive legal right to use your trademark for your goods and services (online and offline)
  • You can stop others from using your brand and trading off / damaging your reputation
  • You have intellectual property, which is a valuable business asset that can be sold or licensed
  • You can use the ® symbol
  • You have a “priority date” if you later want to register your trademark overseas

Trademarks are also registered on a “per country” basis, so a registration in the U.S. only gives you rights in the U.S. Once registered, the trademark is protected for 10 years and can be renewed indefinitely thereafter.

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A registered trademark is a powerful legal right. Understandably, there are some limits on what can be registered. In most cases a trademark will be a word, a phrase or a logo (which might also have words in it). Trademarks that are:
  • not similar to a brand already in use; and
  • not descriptive of your goods and services

have the best chance of being registered without any issues. Using our free trademark search tool, you’ll be able to quickly determine whether your mark is already in common usage (but this tool is obviously a guide only!).

Some trademarks are more difficult to register (and in some cases, impossible), such as:

  • Trademarks that are identical or very similar to earlier filed trademarks for similar goods or services
  • Descriptive terms, such as “shoe” for shoe products or “apple” for fruit
  • Common surnames and geographical place names
  • Words or phrases that favorably promote goods or services, such as “Best Quality”
  • Words or phrases common to trade, such as “On Sale”
  • Marks that are scandalous or misleading
  • Some marks are protected by law and cannot be registered, such as the word “Olympic”
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We offer a helpful tool for searching for and registering a trademark in the U.S. The process is simple:
  1. Start by running a “knockout” search, which will allow you to quickly assess whether your desired mark is already trademarked. Enter the word that you’d like to protect as well as the product or service category so that we can identify possible class matches for you.

  2. On the next screen, the tool will present you with available goods and services that match the class description you entered. Add the relevant descriptions by clicking the + buttons. The tool will automatically assign the relevant class(es) given your selections.

  3. When you click “search,” the tool searches millions of U.S. Federal trademarks and displays those where your name has already been registered.

  4. If no results come up, it means that there aren’t any obvious barriers to registration. You can choose to register the mark if you like.

  5. If several results come up, that means that other people have registered the same mark for similar goods/services. If you think your mark or goods are different enough, you can file an application to register the mark. Alternatively, you can try a different name to see if you get a better result.

  6. You also have the option of running an advanced search. The advanced search allows you to investigate different word combinations, spellings and similar phrases. The tool supports all sorts of searches, like “exact match”, startswith*, *endswith, *contains* and wild*card.

  7. To register your mark, simply click on the “Register” button and fill out the form. Once submitted, you’ll be taken to a PayPal page where you can submit payment.
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This is often the most difficult part of the application and is where most people run into trouble. Trademarks are registered for particular goods and services. That is, your legal rights are limited by the goods and services you include in your application. Registering your trademark for “t-shirts” doesn’t prevent someone also using your trademark for “medical services.”

The description of goods and services is intended to be a plain language description of the products you sell and the services you provide. Whatever you intend to put your trademark on, you should include its relevant class in your application.

It’s a requirement that your goods and services are correctly classified into one of the 45 different trademark classes. The classes are general groupings of different, but related, goods and services. If you don’t get this part right, your application will likely be rejected.

But don’t worry about the complexity of class designations – it’s where we can help! You know your business and our trademark search tool can classify your description of goods and services for you. You can pick from literally thousands of pre-approved descriptions, or even describe your business in your own words. Simply enter in your description where prompted and the tool will do the rest.

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After your order has been placed and paid for, we’ll send you a receipt via email, review your application and, if all looks in order, file the application at the USPTO. We’ll send you a confirmation email so you know when the application has been filed.

You will receive the examination report directly from the USPTO, but we’ll also send you an email as soon as the examination report is sent just in case you have any questions.
inovia’s trademark search function is free and the U.S. registration costs are as follows:

  • Service fee of US$155 per class selected
  • Government fees of US$325 per class selected
For example, if you register a trademark in class 41 (Education, training, entertainment and sports) and in class 35 (Advertising, business and office functions), you will pay US$960 total ($155 service fee + $325 government fee multiplied by two for the two classes selected).
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Currently, we only offer trademark filing in the United States. If you would be interested in an international trademark filing service from inovia, we’d like to hear from you! Please send us an email with your name and the countries you would be interested in filing into.
Trademarks are registered for 10 years and can be renewed indefinitely (subject to certain requirements such as use).