People often ask us, what is a "trademark"? Is it the same as a patent or copyright?
While a trademark, a patent and a copyright are different types of intellectual property, which is a property that derives from the work of the mind (as opposed to real property like real estate or personal property like a car), a trademark is a distinctly different type of property.
A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol and/or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods or services of one party from those of others. In the United States, a trademark will last so long as the owner continues to use the trademark in connection with those goods or services.
A trademark serves not only to identify the source of the goods or services but also to distinguish the quality of your businesses' brand from third party competitors.
While your business must pick the brand name to be used as the trademark, as a part of our trademark counseling, we will guide you in choosing a trademark and provide you with best practices for using your trademark in order to preserve your rights in that trademark.
For example, not all trademarks are treated equally. Strong marks, which are arbitrary and do not describe characteristics of the goods/services, offered such as Kodak for copying machines, are afforded a wider range of protection than weak marks, which merely describe the product itself or its qualities.
Also, we will continue to work with you to ensure that you are using your trademark correctly in order to maintain protection.
If you have any questions on the benefits of filing a trademark application, whether you should file a trademark application, or the costs associated with a filing a trademark application, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.