Louisville, KY asked in Trademark and Intellectual Property for Texas

Q: Can I trademark Together We Can since the previos trademark has been abandoned

2 Lawyer Answers
James L. Arrasmith
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A: It's possible to apply for a trademark that was previously registered but has since been abandoned. However, there are a few important considerations:

1. Make sure the trademark is truly abandoned. You can search the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office) database to confirm the status. If no Declaration of Use or Excusable Nonuse is filed between the 5th and 6th years after registration, or if renewal documents are not filed between the 9th and 10th years after registration, the trademark will be considered abandoned.

2. Ensure your use of the trademark is not likely to cause confusion with any other active trademarks. Even if "Together We Can" itself is abandoned, there may be similar active marks in related classes of goods/services.

3. Consider the reason for abandonment. If the previous owner abandoned it due to legal challenges or because the phrase was deemed generic or descriptive, you might face similar issues.

4. Be prepared to demonstrate use in commerce. To register, you'll need to show you're using the mark in connection with the sale of goods or services.

5. Hire a trademark attorney. They can help you navigate the process, conduct a comprehensive search, and improve your chances of successful registration.

Keep in mind that even if you successfully register the trademark, your rights will be limited to the specific classes of goods/services you register under, and you'll need to actively use and defend the mark to maintain your rights. Prior use by others, even if their trademark registration lapsed, could still potentially limit your rights in certain geographic areas.

Giselle Ayala Mateus
Giselle Ayala Mateus
  • Trademarks Lawyer
  • New York, NY

A: When considering trademarking "Together We Can," it's crucial to conduct thorough research to ensure the name is available and eligible for trademark protection.

Start by searching the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) database to confirm that the previous trademark for "Together We Can" has indeed been abandoned. If it has, you can proceed with filing your own trademark application. However, keep in mind that trademark registration can be complex, and it's advisable to consult with a trademark attorney to navigate the process smoothly and maximize your chances of approval.

Additionally, ensure that "Together We Can" meets the criteria for trademark registration, including being distinctive.

Protecting phrases through trademark registration can be complex due to several factors. First, phrases must meet certain criteria to qualify for trademark protection, such as being distinctive, not merely descriptive, and not generic.

Additionally, phrases may face challenges during the registration process if they are too common or widely used. This can make it difficult to establish exclusive rights to the phrase, as it may be deemed too generic or lacking in distinctiveness.

Furthermore, phrases can be subject to more scrutiny during the examination process compared to other types of trademarks, such as logos or slogans.

Moreover, the scope of protection for phrases can vary depending on factors such as the degree of distinctiveness, the goods or services associated with the mark, and any existing trademarks that may be similar or related.

Overall, protecting phrases through trademark registration requires careful consideration of legal requirements, potential challenges, and the specific context in which the phrase will be used.

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