Lobbying Affiliate: MML&K Government Solutions

When should a business register a trademark?


Practice Areas

January 22, 2016
Jack A. Wheat
Business First of Louisville

All businesses may have the need to register trademarks. Trademark registration ensures that the logo, or other identifying marks and designs, of the particular business are exclusive to that business. Trademark prevents confusion in the marketplace and create a uniquely-identifiable brand under which the business can operate distinctly and exclusively.

Businesses should consider whether protection on a larger scale is necessary, especially for a trademark on the name of the company alone. Businesses operating locally will not have the same need for trademark protection as one operating nationally, for instance. Also, should a business thrive, others may attempt to use the company’s reputation, name or trade dress in an attempt to confuse potential customers.

Finally, a business may use the “TM” or “SM” (service mark) designation to give notice to that business’s claim to the mark, regardless of its registration status. The federal registration symbol “®”, however, is only available after the mark has been actually registered with the federal government.

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