Q: Somebody is selling goods using my mark. They claim to have been using it before I filled. What can I do?
A: Well, unless you have a federal registration and it's considered a 'strong mark' then you'll be relying on common law rights, which are limited geographically. Conducting a trademark search to assess your rights is recommended as the first step, and then you could consider applying with the USPTO. If you have any further questions, please call or email.
Assuming you have a valid Service or Trade Mark, i.e., formally registered with the USPTO, and company using your Mark does not "Cease and Desist," you'll need to file a lawsuit.
Here is website to check on your Mark.
If infringing company is using even slightly different Mark, you can check to see if there Mark is Registered.
A: If your mark is registered, and assuming that they are telling the truth about using the mark first, you can sue to have their mark limited to a certain geographic area or a certain type of product/service. In a case I dealt with like this, a lawsuit was filed but the parties came to an agreement to split the mark geographically and settled the case -- I think that's what a smart businessperson would end up doing. But as a first step, I'd do some research to see if they are telling the truth about using the mark before you. If they are not telling the truth then I'd get a lawyer to send a cease and desist, which sometimes works better than one coming from a non-lawyer. And if that doesn't work, and if it is worth the money, you can sue.
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