Metairie, LA asked in Trademark for Louisiana

Q: Is a trademark usable if the status is Abandoned?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Griffin Klema
Griffin Klema
  • Trademarks Lawyer
  • Tampa, FL

A: Probably, yes. A primary element of trademark law is active use.

If the mark is abandoned (formally with the USPTO), then it's a pretty safe bet that you can use it without running into infringement issues--at least with respect to that registration. And assuming the mark is eligible for trademark protection, you might even be able to register the mark yourself if you intend to use it, or are already using it in commerce.

At the state level, check with a Louisiana licensed trademark attorney to determine if you also have common law trademark rights in addition to federal level rights. State-level common law might protect your business interests at the local level when you are not engaging in commerce across state lines. Generally, engaging in "interstate" commerce (e.g. doing business in other states) is a necessary element of securing a federal trademark registration. See 15 U.S.C. Sec. 1127 and TMEP 901.03.

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