Baltimore, MD asked in Copyright, Business Law and Intellectual Property for Maryland

Q: I am starting my own business. I came up with the name in 2008, but there's a 2017 tv show with the same name...

I invented the name for my business back in 2007-2008 and want to use this name as I am starting my own consulting business. However, in 2017 there was a documentary/TV series created with the same name. Is this copyright infringement if I go forward using the name I'd come up with? It's not really goods/services, and I'm not sure they have a trademark on the name either.

1 Lawyer Answer

Mark Oakley

Answered
  • Rockville, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: As long as you are not creating written or media pieces (film) with the name as a title (assuming the name is unique and identical to the TV show) then there is probably neither copyright nor trademark infringement. But without reviewing the specific title and nature of your business it is impossible to be more specific, so meet with an intellectual property lawyer to be sure. The fact that you “came up with” the name 10 years ago but never used it does not help you.

Vasilios Peros agrees with this answer

1 user found this answer helpful

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.