Technically it is possible to handle the trademark registration process without an attorney. However, you are more likely to have a satisfactory and relatively easy experience with this process if you hire a trademark attorney to assist you. Your Orange County trademark attorney can help you conduct the initial trademark search you must complete before registering any trademark. Essentially, if you desire to register any trademark, you need to confirm that a confusingly similar trademark isn’t already registered. Your attorney can not only assist you in conducting a trademark search through the USPTO’s online database of registered trademarks but also third-party databases that offer more comprehensive search results.
Your trademark attorney can also help with the filing process itself, which can be incredibly complex for even seemingly straightforward trademark applications. Your attorney will ensure you file your trademark on the correct filing basis and help you provide the USPTO with an appropriate trademark specimen. This will ensure you can use your trademark as intended with the full breadth of the legal protections you expect.
When it comes to trademark registration and protection, one of the most important benefits of hiring a trademark attorney is their ability to help you in the face of trademark infringement. Your Orange County trademark infringement lawyer can help you take formal legal steps to protect your trademarks and hold any infringing parties accountable for damages your business sustained due to their unauthorized use of your trademarks.
WHAT IS TRADEMARK INFRINGEMENT?
The term “trademark infringement” refers to the unauthorized use of another party’s registered trademark. Unfortunately, it is relatively common for some individuals or even businesses to attempt to capitalize on another brand’s notoriety and brand presence by releasing products or services with confusingly similar names and appearances. A registered trademark affords the trademark owner exclusive rights to use their trademark and authorize its use by other parties, typically done through licensing agreements.
If you have legally registered any trademark with the USPTO and believe that another party is using your trademark illegally or damaging your brand with a confusingly similar product or service, you have the right to pursue a trademark infringement claim against them. Similarly, if you attempt to use another party’s trademark without authorization, you could very quickly become the target of a trademark infringement lawsuit.
PROTECTING YOURSELF FROM TRADEMARK LITIGATION CLAIMS
There are millions of registered trademarks, and it can be difficult to register a new trademark that another party has not already registered. You might also believe that your desired trademark is unique, only to discover during your trademark search that another party already has a remarkably similar trademark registered.
The trademark search process is perhaps the most crucial step in the trademark registration process. A thorough search can help you ensure your trademark is available for registration from the outset of the process, minimizing the chances of the USPTO rejecting your application because a confusingly similar trademark is already registered to another party.
It’s also vital to file your trademark registration paperwork correctly. You need to inform the USPTO how you intend to use the mark and the forms your mark will take in your operations. Additionally, you may need to file multiple trademarks for specific products. For example, if you are releasing a physical product to stores, you will need to register trademarks for the name of the product, the package design, and the way the product appears on the shelf. It is crucial to work with an Orange Country trademark infringement attorney if you want to use your trademark with peace of mind, knowing that you are not infringing on any existing trademarks and risking becoming the subject of litigation.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO SUE FOR INFRINGEMENT?
If you must take legal action for trademark infringement, you may have concerns about the legal fees you will incur throughout the process. Ultimately, two main factors will influence the overall cost of suing for trademark infringement: your attorney’s billing practices and the time required to pursue your legal action. Most trademark attorneys bill their clients by the hour, so the longer they spend working on a particular case, the more the client pays in legal fees.
If you are concerned about the potential cost of suing for trademark infringement, discuss your concerns with your Orange County trademark infringement attorney and make sure you are clear about how they bill their services and what you can expect from their representation. Once they tell you how they bill their time and how long they expect to spend working on your case, you should have a general estimate of the overall cost of legal fees your case will entail.
WHO ENFORCES TRADEMARK INFRINGEMENT?
The USPTO sets forth the laws and regulations that apply to trademarks registered by US individuals and business entities. If you believe another party has illegally infringed upon your trademark, you will likely need to refer to USPTO policy in pursuing remedial action. Registering your trademark with the USPTO affords you the legal right to sue any party that uses your trademark without your permission.
HOW TO PURSUE AN INFRINGEMENT CASE
If you have formally registered a trademark and believe another party has infringed on it in any way, your first step should be to issue a cease and desist notice to the infringing party. This is a formal letter that your Orange County trademark infringement attorney can help you draft. The letter should outline the infringing actions the offending party has taken and firmly state that you demand they cease these actions immediately or further legal action will follow.
Whenever any party receives a cease and desist notice, they should weigh their options carefully. If they believe they have the right to continue using the trademark in question, they may do so at their own risk. They may also respond to the party that sent the letter and justify their use of the mark, or they may attempt to open a licensing agreement. If they ignore the notice, the party that issued it can then file a civil claim against them for trademark infringement.
A trademark infringement case can potentially involve substantial damages depending on the nature of the infringement and the extent to which it was carried out. For example, suppose a trademark owner lost business due to the infringement, or the infringing party’s actions damaged the trademark owner’s reputation. In that case, the trademark owner can pursue compensation for lost profits and additional civil damages to account for the reputation damage they sustained.
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM YOUR ORANGE COUNTY TRADEMARK ATTORNEY
If you encounter any issues with the trademark registration process or serve a cease and desist notice from another party claiming that you are infringing upon their trademark, an Orange County trademark infringement attorney can be your best asset. An experienced trademark lawyer can perform several valuable functions, from helping you register your trademark with confidence to protecting you from infringement or even defending you against unfounded claims of infringement from other parties.
Your Orange County trademark infringement attorney can assist you with your trademark registration by helping you conduct a trademark search, a process that will help you ensure your desired trademark is free to use. They will also provide legal counsel for the registration process itself by helping you complete your registration paperwork and file your trademark application correctly. Once you have your registered trademark, your Orange County trademark infringement lawyer will help you keep it protected if another party attempts to misuse or exploit your legally registered trademark.
TALK TO THE LAWYERS WHO KNOW TRADEMARK LAW TODAY
If you are interested in establishing a legitimate trademark for your business, the attorneys at Blake & Ayaz can help. We have years of experience handling difficult trademark cases, including complex trademark infringement cases. Whether you are accused of trademark infringement or have been victimized by infringement from another party, we can help. If you are ready to explore your legal options with a reliable and experienced Orange County trademark infringement attorney, contact us today for more information about how we can assist you.