Why Are Trademark Searches Critical to New Brands?

As a new brand seeking to establish itself as a reputable source of products and sources, a trademark registration is an excellent way to provide a greater sense of authenticity and legitimacy for the brand, as well as produce a barrier of legal protection for the brand you have worked so hard to build. Prior to filing an application for your trademark registration, however, it is imperative that a trademark search is done before you begin the process at the federal level.

A trademark search helps to ensure a trademark application will be approved by the USPTO and future problems in the marketplace will be avoided

The biggest advantage to a trademark search, especially for a new brand, is that it provides clarity regarding the uniqueness of your trademark. When filing a federal trademark application for your name, logo, or symbol i, the federal government compares it to a registry of already established trademarks and may reject yours based upon being too similar to a mark already in existence. By performing a preliminary trademark search, you are able to establish that your brand is unique enough to be a registered trademark. If the preliminary search returns several established marks similar to yours, then you can make the needed changes and proceed with the edited mark.

If the similar mark is found during the application process, the USPTO examining attorney would issue a rejection in the form of an Office action, inevitably prolonging the application process or causing complete refusal of your application. This saves you as the trademark owner both time and money in government fees, both now avoidable thanks to the trademark search performed before applying.

Furthermore, a trademark search helps to ensure that you will not be sued for trademark infringement by a competitor.  If you ultimately select a name that is similar to a competitor, you could be sued.  A properly completed trademark search will alert you to such problems.  You can then make a change before incurring such liability.

Consider utilizing an attorney’s help when performing a trademark search

There are some trademark search engines available that advertise as efficient and all-encompassing, but this is often not the case.  To ensure that you are considering all variables prior to submitting your application, it is beneficial to work with an attorney from a trademark law firm. Studies show that only 57% of individuals who filed a trademark application without using an attorney were approved, while 83% of applicants who did use an attorney were approved.

Gerben IP uses Corsearch software for its federal and state trademark searches.  This software is a powerful industry-leading trademark search software, to ensure clients are receiving thorough trademark search results and to confirm that no pre-existing trademarks could hinder your application process. Once the search is completed, our clients receive an opinion letter from an attorney, as well as a telephone consultation. These conversations will guide the rest of the application process and ultimately result in the drafting and filing of your trademark application.

Because of the statistical benefit of hiring an attorney to assist with the trademark registration process, new brands find this investment to be beneficial overall. Trademark searches are critical for new brands in order to minimize any future obstacles that may stand in the way of their brand’s growth, and the help of a professional legal team statistically improves your chance of success.

Josh Gerben, Esq.

Josh Gerben, Esq. is the founder and principal of Gerben IP. In 2008, Mr. Gerben started the firm to provide high-quality trademark services at reasonable prices. Today, he is recognized by the World Trademark Review as a top trademark filer, having registered over 7,500 trademarks. The contents of this blog are for informational purposes only and may not be relied on as legal advice.

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