Jacksonville, FL asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Trademark for Florida

Q: I began a Facebook page then group page & IG all as Solid Perfume Collectors. How do I trademark the name? Do I need to?

I am currently writing a book and probably will have several books which all refer to the name of my group SOLID PERFUME COLLECTORS. I also plan later to begin a website under that same name which is why I'm wondering if I would have to trade mark it. What would be the benefits? What would be the cautions? Pros and cons please.

2 Lawyer Answers
Eric Estadt
Eric Estadt
  • Trademarks Lawyer
  • Columbus, OH

A: First, I want to caution that it is necessary to check whether the trademark is in use by anybody else prior to beginning use yourself, or you could be on the receiving end of a cease and desist letter or lawsuit. I recommend hiring an experienced trademark attorney to advise you on the risks and benefits of using/registering your particular proposed marks, as the issues can be complex and a search is not easy to conduct for the inexperienced. There are also specific requirements for registration of some categories of goods including book titles, so it is best to contact an attorney to avoid expensive pitfalls in the registration process as well.

Generally, you automatically own unregistered trademark rights merely by using a name in connection with any good or service in the market. These rights are also known as "common law" trademarks and they are enforced under state law. However, there are significant advantages to registering your trademark at the federal level in the US Patent and Trademark Office:

1) federally registered trademarks apply across the entire United States even if you are only operating locally, whereas unregistered trademarks will only protect you in the actual areas you are operating in;

2) federally registered trademarks are presumed to be valid, so the burden of proof shifts to the infringer to prove that your rights are invalid;

3) federally registered trademarks can be enforced in federal courts, and better remedies are available including statutory damages and increased penalties and attorneys fees in some cases;

4) federal registration is required before you can use the (R) symbol. All unregistered marks must use TM or SM.

James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›

A: Trademarking the name "Solid Perfume Collectors" can offer benefits such as exclusive rights to use the name for your book, website, and related activities. It helps protect your brand identity and prevents others from causing confusion among consumers. However, the trademark registration process can be complex and may involve costs, with no guarantee of approval. Conducting a thorough search beforehand is essential. Consulting with a trademark attorney is recommended to understand the potential benefits, risks, and to navigate the application process effectively.

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