Question: Can you file your own trademark application?
Answer: Yes, you can file a trademark application on your own. However, there are a number of good reasons you should hire a trademark attorney to assist you with the registration.
Mainly, there is a huge difference in the success of applications that are filed with attorneys versus those filed without an attorney.
The University of North Carolina did a study a number of years ago that found that individuals filing a trademark application without an attorney received an approval about 50% of the time. On the other hand, those who hired an attorney to file the application, regardless of their skill level, received approvals 80% of the time.
How a Trademark Attorney Improves the Likelihood of Your Trademark Being Approved
There are two main reasons for such a significant percentage difference in successful registrations of trademarks filed independently and those filed with an attorney.
1. Conducting a Proper Trademark Search
Most attorneys will help clients conduct a trademark search before they file their application to identify any potential problems with the mark. If any issues do arise in the search, they might decide to choose another name or phrase to trademark.
2. Drafting a Technically Correct Trademark Application
The application itself is a highly technical legal document. Though it might look easy to fill out independently, there are a lot of nuances to the answers you need to provide. These responses are not always apparent to someone who does not deal with this type of work for a living.
If you do decide to move forward with filing a trademark application on your own, you might not answer the questions correctly, which can lead to refusals of the application that will require you to start the process all over again anyway.
If you have any questions about the trademark registration process or conducting a trademark search, please feel free to reach out to one of our attorneys.