The United States Patent and Trademark Office, or USPTO, requires registrants to select international trademark classes when submitting a trademark application. These classes categorize the goods or services business owners plan to offer in association with their trademark. One frequently used trademark class is Class 41, for Education and Entertainment Services, but don’t let the title fool you. Class 41 represents a wide variety of services that, at first, may not seem like they fall under the education or entertainment umbrellas. Read on to learn more about Class 41.
Overview of International Class 41
One of the most common trademark classes, appearing in up to 10 percent of trademark applications yearly, is Class 41, for Education and Entertainment. It’s one of 11 service classes, which means that products from the education and entertainment industries will not be included. However, a broad range of services do fall into Class 41. Some of these services include:
- Educational institutions, from preschools to universities
- Training programs, including gymnastic classes and workshops hosted by industry experts
- Publishing services, including book publication, textbook creation, and journal publication
- Animal training services
- Sporting events
- Personal training and fitness coaching
- Amusement parks, zoos, and theaters
- Lotteries and gambling operations
In addition to selecting a trademark class, you will also need to submit a specimen along with your trademark application. This specimen will demonstrate that you are currently using your trademark in commerce. Because Class 41 is a service class, it can be more challenging to determine the right specimen to submit with your application, and goods will not be accepted. Some examples of specimens that are acceptable for Class 41 include:
- A business card that clearly outlines services
- A screenshot of your website, including URL
- Magazine or newspaper ads
Considerations when Selecting the Right International Classes
Many businesses provide more than one service or offer more than one product. For that reason, it’s likely your business will also require multiple trademark classes. Trademark Class 41 may best represent your brand overall, but consider all services and goods you plan to offer. For example, your animal training business may also provide veterinary services. If so, you’ll need to add Class 44 for Medical and Veterinary Services to your application. Some additional coordinating classes include:
- Class 25: Clothing
- Class 28: Toys and Sporting Goods
- Class 37: Construction Services
- Class 42: Science and Technology Services
- Class 43: Food Services
- Class 45: Security and Legal Services
Selecting the right trademark classes for your brand can be a challenging and tedious process. Choosing the wrong classes could leave your business vulnerable to trademark infringement in the future, but selecting too many classes may cause your application to be rejected by the USPTO. That’s because you will need to document use of your trademark in commerce at the time of your application, or submit an your application based on an “intent to use”, which will require you to prove use in commerce within a timeframe set by the USPTO.
In addition, your trademark filing fees are determined based on the number of classes you file in, so it’s important to select only the classes representing goods and services you offer now or plan to offer in the future. Consider working with an experienced attorney that can assist you in selecting the correct trademark classes for your unique brand, resulting in the broadest protections possible. Your attorney will also guide you in selecting the best specimens to document use of your trademark in each class you’ve included on your trademark application.
International Trademark Class 41
Class 41 for Education and Entertainment is one of the most frequently used trademark classes, probably because of the broad range of services that fall under it. Whether you plan to open a preschool, a circus, or gym offering fitness training, you will need to include Class 41. Keep in mind, however, that you may need to include additional trademark classes in your trademark application. If your sporting event or concert venue will also sell branded shirts and hats, for example, you’ll need to add Class 25 for Clothing. Selecting the right classes for your business may sound stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. Contact Gerben IP today to learn more about our trademark registration services, including drafting of your trademark application.