Trademark Application Process

Greetings. I’m trademark attorney Josh Gerben, and today I want to talk a little a bit about what happens once we file your trademark application.

Once a trademark application is filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, it’s going to just sit there for about three or four months. The reason for this is that every trademark application has to be hand reviewed by a U.S government attorney, otherwise known as a trademark examining attorney. These examining attorneys are real busy. There are a couple hundred thousand trademark applications filed every single year, and there are only hundreds of trademark examining attorneys.

Once you wait that initial three to four month period, the examining attorney will take your application and review it and determine if he or she thinks it’s approvable for registration. In order to determine this, the examining attorney is going to run a trademark search of their own to determine if there is any pre-existing federally registered trademark or pending applications that could bar the registration of your trademark.

In addition, the examining attorney is going to look at your application and ensure that all the technical requirements are met. There are many of these, and that’s why hiring a trademark attorney is always a good idea.

Once the examining attorney reviews the application and approves it for registration, the application will then go for something called publication. This is a 30 day period when the application is published, and anybody, meaning somebody that doesn’t have a trademark registered or somebody that does have a trademark registered, could oppose your application.

So let’s say the government approves a trademark application, but somebody thinks that it’s too close to their trademark and shouldn’t be allowed to be registered. This 30 day publication period is the period in which a challenge can be lodged against the application.

Once that 30 day period of public opposition runs, if no comments or opposition is received, the application will be sent back to the examining attorney for final review. At that point, the examining attorney will either register the trademark, or if you filed the trademark before you actually began selling your goods and services as an intent to use application, the examining attorney will make a request that the applicant, or you, proves that the goods or services are now for sell. Then once that proof is submitted, the registration will be issued.

I hope this helps clarify some of the process. If you have any other questions, please feel free to give me a call.

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