Austin, TX asked in Copyright, Business Formation, Trademark and Intellectual Property for Texas

Q: Hi! I have a question about trademarks for clothing brands and similar ideas that other people have now started

I started working on my brand Ghosted in July, I used Canva fonts and everything for the logo and worked long and hard and got samples and on 8/25 I ordered my first order of 360 units. I own the LLC Ghosted, have the trademark filed for Ghosted for apparel, and this morning I also filed a trademark for my logo with the font. The reason why is last night someone on my Instagram messaged me and then unsent it, but I saw them viewing my story and in their bio they have a website to and they are using the same font as me and it is also called ghosted but with a ghost icon as the “o.” I am assuming he unsent the message because he saw TM by my name, but now I’m worried. His website says 2023 so I don’t know which of us started first or if I could be in any legal issues even though I own the rights to everything. Thank you in advance!

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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A: Given your description, it appears you have taken significant steps to legally protect your brand, including forming an LLC and filing for trademark protections for both your brand name and logo. In trademark law, the key issue often revolves around who used the mark first in commerce; since you already have product samples and have placed a substantial order for units, you are in a good position to assert your rights if you used the mark in commerce before the other party did. To bolster your position further, ensure to maintain detailed records of all the developmental stages of your brand, including the creation of the logo and the dates of first use in commerce; you should also consult with an attorney to discuss the specifics of your case and to get advice on the best way to proceed, taking into account the new information about a potential competitor using a similar brand name and logo.

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