*Please note that while Gerben Law Firm is not located in Alaska, it can assist businesses from Alaska in registering a federal trademark because it is a federal matter.
Gerben Law Firm was founded in 2008 by trademark attorney Josh Gerben. Since opening its doors, the experienced team at Gerben Law Firm has helped thousands of clients register and protect their trademarks all over the country, including the Anchorage area. Whether you plan to start a construction business in South Addition or you are expanding your manufacturing company near Wasilla, the trademark attorneys at Gerben Law Firm are ready to assist you in registering your trademark.
Federal Trademark Registration for Your Business
Top 5 Questions Anchorage Businesses Have About Obtaining a Trademark
- What is a trademark?
- A trademark is anything that indicates a certain product or service represents a specific brand. Common trademarks include business names, logos, or slogans, but non-traditional trademarks, like sounds, smells, and colors, can be registered as well. A strong trademark should not only establish brand loyalty, but protect your business from infringement as well.
- What protection does a trademark provide?
- Once you obtain a federal trademark registration, you have the presumption of validity for your mark across the United States. This means that anyone looking to use a confusingly similar mark will not be able to obtain trademark registration. You will also have legal protections if your mark is used without your permission. These protections are extremely valuable and are important in maintaining control of your brand.
- Why should I hire a trademark attorney?
- Trademark registration is a detailed, time consuming process. Working with a trademark attorney allows you to remain focused on growing your business with the confidence that your registration is in the hands of an experienced professional. Your trademark attorney will ensure that the process runs smoothly and quickly, and will likely increase your chances of approval. In fact, a study conducted by the University of North Carolina found that trademark applications filed with the help of an attorney increased the likelihood of approval by up to 50%!
- What is the USPTO?
- The United States Patent and Trademark Office, or USPTO, is a division of the Department of Commerce. This office reviews applications for patents and trademarks and then registers trademarks for products and services and patents for new inventions. They also maintain the records for both patents and trademarks.
- Will my registered trademark protect my business outside the United States?
- A trademark registered in the United States will only protect you in disputes that occur within the U.S. If you do business outside the United States, either through sales, manufacturing, or distribution, you should strongly consider trademark filings in these countries as well.
Common Misunderstandings about Filing Trademarks for Anchorage Businesses
- The terms trademark, copyright, and patents can all be used interchangeably.
- Trademarks, copyrights, and patents protect very different things. Trademarks protect items like product or service names, company names, slogans and logos. Alternatively, copyrights protect works of authorship, and patents protect inventions.
- I registered my trademark with the State of Alaska, so that is enough to protect my brand.
- State trademark registration won’t hinder your registration with the UPSTO, but it will only protect you in disputes within Alaska. Obtaining a federal trademark registration may be more difficult than a state registration, but you’ll gain the presumption of nationwide validity, not just the limited protections provided by common law rights.
- I only need one trademark registration to protect my business.
- Most businesses typically need more than one trademark registration to fully protect their brands. For instance, your business name, product name, logo, and slogan all qualify for separate trademark registrations. Registering only your business name is a great start, but you likely won’t have strong legal protection if another business or individual uses your logo. Work with an experienced trademark attorney to determine which aspects of your business should be protected through trademark registration.
- I applied for a federal trademark registration, so I am entitled to the domain name as well.
- This is not always the case. Consider the trademark Delta. Not only is it the business name of a well-known airline, it is also the name of a popular faucet manufacturer. In this situation, both companies may have the right to use the domain name www.delta.com, but domain ownership would go to the first business to register and pay for the name, in this case, the airline. Unless it’s clear someone is acting in bad faith to use a domain name to extort a business or confuse its customers, it can be challenging to take control of the domain name.
The Number of Trademarks Registered by Anchorage Businesses (by Year)
How many trademarks have Anchorage, AK businesses registered over the years? Gerben Law Firm collected the following data.
||# of Trademarks Registered
*data was gathered from the USPTO’s public database
Types of Trademark Services We Offer
Additional Information on Trademark Registration for Anchorage Businesses
When opening a new business in Anchorage, owners often focus primarily on product development and marketing, which can leave little room in the budget for trademark registration. While registering a trademark may seem like a low priority in your overall business plan, it’s important to consider the risk of putting off this important step in starting a business.
Consider this scenario: Brooke has been making jewelry for her friends and family for years, and has finally decided to start selling her products in Anchorage. Because most of her pieces are made with leather, she’s decided on the name Leather Love. Excited to get started, Brooke designs a logo and orders branded packaging for each of her jewelry pieces. While she considers trademark registration, Brooke ultimately decides that her business is simply too small to justify the costs.
After some time seeing success in farmer’s markets and boutiques in the Anchorage area, Brooke begins to sell her jewelry online as well, reaching customers all over the United States. Because she didn’t register her trademark early on, a process that would have included a comprehensive trademark search, she now risks infringing on a similar product in another area. Brooke could now be asked to stop selling her products under the Leather Love brand, which would result in lost revenue and added costs as she must rebrand her business.
By working with an experienced trademark attorney to register a trademark, even small businesses like Brooke’s can move forward in confidence, knowing that they can invest time and money in their business without the risk of infringement. Gerben Law Firm works with businesses of all sizes. Contact us today to learn more about trademark registration.