Trademark Questions & Answers by State

Trademark Questions & Answers

Q: I'm trying to file a trademark for "WORTHY". It will include clothing branding, audio recording and live shows/concerts.

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Trademark for Tennessee on
Answered on Jun 25, 2017

Did you receive an initial response from the USPTO (usually within about three months of your original application)? It can take a year to a year and a half before your trademark registration is completed.

I would encourage you to find out the status of the application you've already filed, before seeking an attorney to assist you file an application for the same trademark.

Reach out to 2-3 attorneys, who do free consultations, via the "find a lawyer" function at the top of...
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Q: Can a non trademarked character be remixed and sold for profit?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Trademark for Florida on
Answered on Jun 23, 2017

This would be a copyright issue. The case is also fact-specific, meaning that without more information, it will be tough to speculate about whether infringement is likely. If you would like to assert a copyright, you will need to register it. Copyright registration is straightforward, and can likely be done yourself, although many people also choose to have a lawyer do it for them. Once registered, you should talk to an copyright attorney. Copyright law can provide for lawyer fees, so it's a...
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Q: Are there state or international trademark laws to keep in mind in addition to federal?

2 Answers | Asked in Trademark for New York on
Answered on Jun 23, 2017

A Federal Trademark will offer you protection in the States that you do business in and the Madrid Protocol / System can protect you overseas since the U.S. is a signatory to that treaty. That said, the strength of your Trademark really depends upon how famous and recognizable it is in those geographic areas in relation to your good or services. It's more complex than just that, I'd be happy to speak with you to provide more in depth analysis.
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Q: Can I print Bob Ross on a shirt? I have a direct to garment Printer

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Trademark for Indiana on
Answered on Jun 23, 2017

**Using Bob Ross's Paintings**

Bob Ross was born in 1942 and presumably began painting some time before hosting The Joy of Painting, which first went on the air in 1983. I'll assume you're talking about using paintings created on his famous show.

If Bob Ross's work was published after January 1, 1978, it receives the following terms of protection:

Individually authored works: Life of author + 70 years;

Joint works: Life of last surviving author + 70 years;...
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Q: Can a Company trademark something created by and funded by a person even though they were in the process of doing so?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Copyright, Intellectual Property and Trademark for California on
Answered on Jun 22, 2017

What are the terms of the contract re: the IP in question? If silent, the performer may have the IP rights. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney. You can read more about me, my credentials, awards, honors, testimonials, and media appearances/ publications on my law practice website, www.AEesq.com. I practice law in CA, NY, MA, and DC in the following areas of law: Business & Contracts,...
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Q: I have a trademark case against a software company based in the U.S.

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for California on
Answered on Jun 20, 2017

You can try. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney. You can read more about me, my credentials, awards, honors, testimonials, and media appearances/ publications on my law practice website, www.AEesq.com. I practice law in CA, NY, MA, and DC in the following areas of law: Business & Contracts, Criminal Defense, Divorce & Child Custody, and Education Law. This answer does not constitute legal...
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Q: Can I use X name if it's being used in another country(s)??

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for California on
Answered on Jun 15, 2017

Trademarks are specific to product/service type and location. You establish the type of product/service by sales or by choosing the type during registration. You establish location either by sales or by registering in a given state or country. You would infringe Apple's trademark by using the name to sell electronics, among other things.

It is unclear whether your example is hypothetical or not, but there is an additional part of trademark law that would apply. Trademark dilution...
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Q: I want to offer freelance software development services under the name "office 365 developer"

1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property and Trademark on
Answered on Jun 13, 2017

Trademark infringement is determined by the "likelihood of confusion" test. This test inquires whether a reasonable consumer is likely to be confused about the provenance of a given product or service. It seems there is a good chance that consumers would be confused about whether the service is being provided by Microsoft.
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Q: what does this mean: 2017-04-28 ABANDONMENT FAILURE TO RESPOND OR LATE RESPONSE 2017-04-28 ABANDONMENT NOTICE MAILED

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Patents and Trademark for California on
Answered on Jun 13, 2017

Abandonment means that an application has been filed with the Patent and Trademark Office, and the Office found some deficiency in the application that requires a response from the Applicant, but the Applicant failed to respond within a set time period so the application has been denied.

An Applicant may petition the Office to "revive" an application (that is, to withdraw the denial) if the failure to respond was not intentional. In some cases, the petition to revive must be received...
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Q: I want to trademark UNLABELED FOR my clothing brand. Is it already taken ?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Trademark for Illinois on
Answered on Jun 11, 2017

You can search for federal trademarks at the USPTO via the TESS system. There are two possible registrations that may prevent you from securing a trademark: "Unlabeled Society" and "Unlabeled State of Mind." Both are registered in international class 25 (clothing). So, if you pursued a trademark registration for "unlabeled" you may receive a rejection from the examiner under Section 2(a), called a "likelihood of confusion" rejection.

Good luck!

Griffin Klema...
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Q: i created a t-shirt that went viral and is now being copied on multiple websites. what can i do?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Trademark for Maryland on
Answered on Jun 11, 2017

First things first: register your copyright with the U.S. Copyright Office. The filing fee is small ($30). An attorney can help you with that process, and it's important to ensure that the registration is properly filed.

You may also want to try trademarking the slogan. Filing an application to register the trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark office is a bit more expensive ($225 filing fee for a TEAS Plus online application). Again, consider getting some assistance from a...
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Q: What does Status 641--non-final action--mailed mean for a trademark?

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for Colorado on
Answered on Jun 9, 2017

Unless you choose to handle this yourself, you will need a lawyer to handle the prosecution of your trademark application. Application prosecution is the process of responding to objections and rejections by the trademark office. A non-final action means that there is something about the application that needs to be addressed by you or your lawyer. Many lawyers (myself included) offer free initial consultations. I would recommend speaking with a lawyer to discuss the specifics of your case to...
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Q: Do I need to have a company to create a trademark in order to own it or can I do it just... myself?

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark on
Answered on Jun 6, 2017

I assume you're referring to a record "label" and the productions that label produces. Here's the definition of trademark and service mark found at the Trademark Office: A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol, and/or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods of one party from those of others. A service mark is a word, phrase, symbol, and/or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of a service rather than goods. Some examples include: brand names, slogans, and...
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Q: Manufacturer sold me products that violate image trademark, now my listings removed from eBay, am I responsible?

1 Answer | Asked in Trademark for California on
Answered on Jun 5, 2017

You both may be liable - you as seller, and them as manufacturer. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney. You can read more about me, my credentials, awards, honors, testimonials, and media appearances/ publications on my law practice website, www.AEesq.com. I practice law in CA, NY, MA, and DC in the following areas of law: Business & Contracts, Criminal Defense, Divorce & Child Custody, and...
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Q: friend came up with a slogan for a shirt, I created the design for it. I want to use it as my company name. Do I owe him

1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Intellectual Property and Trademark for Ohio on
Answered on Jun 5, 2017

A slogan is usually too short for copyright protection, so must be protected as a trademark or service mark. That either requires registration with the state or being used in commerce. If he has not registered it or used it in business, then he probably could not succeed on a claim against you. But anyone can sue for almost anything. And even if he doesn't sue you, he might feel cheated. Use the Find a Lawyer tab to consult a local business attorney about starting your business and also...
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Q: My college merged with another school and the name was changed. Would I be able to print the old name on shirts to sell?

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Trademark for Pennsylvania on
Answered on Jun 3, 2017

You can find out if someone owns a live trademark on "Philadelphia University" by searching the United States Patent and Trademark Office's Trademark Electronic Search System. Pennsylvania also has a state trademark registration system, so search there also. If someone owns the trademark, contact them and obtain a license for your intended use. If your search doesn't turn up anything, you should contact an attorney in your state to determine your legal liability for using the name and logo...
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Q: If I use my last name as my business name can that be trademarked?

2 Answers | Asked in Trademark for New York on
Answered on Jun 2, 2017

Yes, ever here of Ford?
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Q: What're the Parody/Fair Use laws concerning impersonating fictional characters humorously narrating public domain works?

1 Answer | Asked in Entertainment / Sports, Intellectual Property, Internet Law and Trademark for California on
Answered on Jun 1, 2017

This might qualify as a parody. Have a lawyer review the facts and business carefully to help you try to avoid IP violations. More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney. You can read more about me, my credentials, awards, honors, testimonials, and media appearances/ publications on my law practice website, www.AEesq.com. I practice law in CA, NY, MA, and DC in the following areas of law: Business &...
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Q: Hello,Can i use a pen name signing up my personal information on the copyright.gov website? Should i get it trademarked?

1 Answer | Asked in Business Formation, Contracts, Copyright and Trademark for California on
Answered on May 30, 2017

You can use any name you want to, as long as you don't defraud anyone or evade a tax. On tax returns they'll ask you for both. But those are confidential. It's called a pseudonym not a pen name, which is a term used for writers.

So, I'd say no. Names can be protected, but not if they are others' names as well.

A better alternative might be to form a limited liability company, or a subchapter S corporation.
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Q: I'm trying to start a t-shirt business and do not want to commit copyright infringement.

1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Trademark for Georgia on
Answered on May 25, 2017

If you are going to sell goods based on the Georgia Bulldogs logo, only the University of Georgia's IP management department will be able to decide if you will get in trouble or not. Modifying a copyrighted image for your own use is copyright infringement. Modifying a logo is also almost certainly trademark infringement.

You can seek permission from the rights holder to use their image and may have to pay a licensing fee or a portion of your profits.
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