One of the most challenging tasks in completing a trademark application is deciding which trademark classes to include. Each class has its own list of goods or services, and even the names of the classes can be a bit confusing. Trademark Class 9 for Electrical and Scientific Apparatus is commonly used by business owners and includes a wide variety of products. Is Class 9 right for your business? Read on to learn more.
What’s a Trademark Class?
As you draft your trademark application, you’ll be asked to select certain classes of goods and services that best represent the goods and services you plan to offer in association with your trademark. These International Trademark Classes are based on the Nice Classifications that are used in many countries throughout the world. There are 45 trademark classes to choose from, 34 classes for goods and 11 for services. A registered trademark will only be protected in the trademark classes included on the registration, and trademark owners commonly need to file for more than one trademark class to fully protect their brands. For more information on what’s a trademark class, watch our video here.
Trademark Class 9: Electrical and Scientific Apparatus
One of the most common trademark classes, Class 9 represents a wide range of electronic and scientific products, including some of the most widely used products like smartphones and computers. Because Class 9 is a goods class, electrical and scientific services are not included and can be found in one of the 11 service classes. What does Trademark Class 9 include? A full list can be found on the USPTO website, but here’s a look at some of the products included in Class 9:
- Baby monitors
- Cash registers
- Computer programs
- Battery chargers
- Copper wire
- Projection screens
- Digital photo frames
- Video cables
- Laptop bags
- Metal detectors
- Juke boxes
- Protective masks
- Life-saving equipment like life jackets and life rafts
While Class 9 is broad, it’s not inclusive of every electronic or scientific product. Some products that are not included in Class 9 include:
- Electric toothbrushes
- Electromechanical kitchen appliances
- Clocks and watches
- Non-downloadable digital goods
- Electrical apparatus for heating foods or liquids
Specimens and Coordinating Classes
Along with your selected trademark classes, you’ll also need to provide a specimen that shows how the trademark will be used in commerce. For product classes these specimens, or samples, are often labels, containers, and tags with the trademark clearly visible. A copy of one of these specimens will need to be submitted with your trademark application.
Businesses typically offer more than one product or service, and therefore most must file for multiple trademark classes. Even if Class 9 best represents the products you plan to offer under your trademark, consider other goods and services you plan to offer as well. For example, if you plan to sell fishing equipment along with life vests, you would also need to file for Class 28, Games and Sporting Goods. Some additional coordinating classes include:
- Class 10: Medial Supplies
- Class 16: Paper Goods
- Class 38: Telecommunications
- Class 39: Shipping and Travel Services
- Class 41: Education and Entertainment Services
- Class 42: Science and Technology Services
Considerations when Selecting Trademark Classes
Your registered trademark will only be protected in association with the trademark classes you’ve selected on your trademark application. This is why it is critical to select the correct classes from the start. You may be tempted to simply select as many trademark classes as possible, in an effort to obtain the broadest protections, but that strategy has some downsides. First, your registration costs will be much higher, because your filing fees are based on the number of classes included on the application. Your application may also be rejected if you cannot demonstrate use in commerce within the timeframe set by the USPTO.
With 45 different trademark classes, it can be challenging to determine which classes best fit your business needs. Instead of guessing the correct classes or registering for too many, consider working with a trademark attorney. They can evaluate your business plan, considering both the products and services you currently offer and those you plan to offer in the future, to determine which trademark classes should be included on your application.
Trademark Class 9
Class 9 for Electrical and Scientific Apparatus includes many of today’s most popular products, like smartphones, mobile apps, and computer programs, but it also includes a wide range of other products. Whether you plan to sell projection screens or manufacture baby monitors, you will need to include Class 9 on your trademark application. Based on your business plan, however, you may also need to include some coordinating classes. It can be challenging to choose the right trademark classes for your business, but Gerben IP can help. Contact us today to start the process to register your trademark.