Naming your business correctly is one of the most important decisions you can make. As one of your organization’s vital assets, it is the first impression a consumer or potential client will have of your company. Most likely, a person will learn about your business through word of mouth or a simple internet search. They will form an opinion, good or bad, before seeing your office space, products, or services. Getting the name of your business right the first time is crucial because that will be your company’s presentation to the world.
If a competitor or vengeful individual starts using that name for their own nefarious reasons, the future of your organization could easily be put in jeopardy. An experienced trademark lawyer in Los Angeles or Santa Monica can help you trademark your business name to protect your hard work.
What is a Trademark?
A trademark that is registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will give you the right to solely use your company name as it relates to the goods or services you identify at the time of registration. It grants you the right to legally enforce the protection of your trademark by taking your case to federal court and filing a lawsuit if your business is infringed upon.
Though trademark protection is strong, it is up to you as the owner or manager of the business to be vigilant of any people or competitors who are using your name illegally. You must take the necessary measure sot stop them.
If you are deciding whether to register a trademark for the name of your organization, consider the following questions:
What is the geographic reach of your company? Trademark law is easily enforced in the United States. Once your company becomes global, that enforcement becomes more of a challenge.
What type of name will you choose? You will only be able to register a name for your business if the name of your business is somewhat unique and the chance of it being confused with another existing name is minimal (i.e. Tesla, Xerox, Microsoft, etc.) Distinct coined names like “Google” will be easy to trademark and receive the highest level of legal protection.
What time and financial resources are available to file the application for a trademark? The maintenance of registration will take time. A trademark is active for five years after the date the trademark was filed with the California Secretary of State’s office. After the trademark expires, you will have six months to renew it. As long as it is being used, it must be renewed every five years. The cost of filing a trademark is $70 per mark.
Experienced Trademark Law Attorneys in Los Angeles and Santa Monica
If you currently own a business or are considering starting one, you may already know that your competition is aware of the value and importance of company and domain names. URLs have become a contentious area of trademark infringement and deceptive practices. You need to protect all that you have worked so hard to attain.
Work with a skilled team of trademark lawyers at Verhagen Bennett. Call (310) 917-1064 or schedule a consultation to learn how we can help you protect your company and its reputation.
(image courtesy of Jon Tyson)
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© 2018 Verhagen Bennett LLP — This article is for general information only. The information presented should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.