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June 17th, 2002, 10:12 AM #1
- Join Date
- January 17th, 2005
If you want to get in the trademark game...you know where you get to use the little TM and circled R...you best go to the library and read about it.
Having done a couple in my time, here's what to do to save you some grief and money.
First, a trademark can be a valuable part of your business, so don't take it lightly.
Second, if you come up with a good name you want to trademark then you have to document it's first use date so you can prove it in court if it ever gets that far and you need to see that someone deosen't already have it
So you go to the trademark office and look it up. Then if it's not registered, you need to write three letter stating something like,"One X date at Y time, I (you) have begun using THE NAME for businesses under the classifications (list the gov business classes you wish to use)
Sign the letter and get it notarized preferably with a witness. Then mail it to yourself registered mail. Now if you have to go to court, you have indisputable proof of the "time and date" of your first use.
Then apply to trademark it in your STATE. The cost is minimal and you lock up your use at home. Once you have the mark officially registered in your state, then you can make the decision to go to the Feds and pay the fee and jump thru the hoops.
The fact you have both a "time and date" notarized letter and a state registration usually means you are serious to the FEDS and they act accordingly.
However, this whole area is a tricked out game, so in doing the FED deal you should probably use a GOOD legal beagle.
Doing some homework, the time and date letter and state registration are easy and straight forward and don't require much out of pocket. Plus, 99.9% of the people don't know you can file for state trademarks.
You can get a California, N.Y, Illinois and Florida, Pennsylvania & Texas trademarks for 'chump change' relatively speaking and even though someone could get the FED mark, the state marks still are in force in the states - so the guys with the FED mark got to buy it from you, pay you a license fee, or not do business in those state with the mark.
Not being able to use your trademark in any of these states is NOT good if you have a FED mark but the other guy has the state mark.
June 18th, 2002, 02:32 AM #2
its only 5.00 in arizona, takes about a week and you can do a mail or phone ap.
this is exactly one of the techniques i used.
in arizona, they are good for 5 years.
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