Legal Question in Intellectual Property in District of Columbia

Trademark Question

I am starting a business and have a question about trademarks - mostly for planning and budgetary purposes.

If my intention is to protect both the company name and the company logo - and the logo includes the name in a stylized form (as the only text in the logo) - do I need to have two different trademarks - a ''standard character mark'' for the name and a ''design plus words...'' for the logo? Or is just trademarking the logo and making the ''word mark'' the company name enough to do the job?

Also, what is the typical charge to file an application for me? I already have the name, logo, suitable (for the PTO) artwork and what I think is the proper international class ready. I know I can file it myself but I don't have time to deal with any office actions that might come down - not that I expect any because my searching has found nothing remotely close to what I'm doing.


Asked on 3/11/09, 12:38 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Daniel Press Chung & Press, P.C.

Re: Trademark Question

I generally recommend doing both marks in this scenario, as the standard character mark protects any use of the word, in any form, for the covered goods/services, while the design mark protects efforts to use a similar logo without the same or identical wording, such as might cause a likelihood of confusion or dilution as to the logo but not with the words just stripped to their standard characters. Generally speaking, we charge $750 per mark with one class, including the filing fees, plus just the filing fees for additional classes; if the second mark is just a stylized version of the standard character mark, we charge that mark at an additional $500 for the first class. These fees do not include responses to substantive office actions, appeals, or opposition proceedings, all of which are billed hourly. They include an initial search of the PTO database, but no additional searches, which are not required, and which can actually adversely impact your right to register a mark.

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Answered on 3/11/09, 4:16 pm
Steven Rinaldi Steven D. Rinaldi, P.C.

Re: Trademark Question

I am an attorney who has 21 years of trademark law experience. I believe that since the logo includes the name, and the goods/services will be marketed through the logo, then only one filing is necessary. If you are also using the name to market, without the logo, then two filings may be necessary.

Since you have done some preliminary searching and you have already developed suitable PTO artwork this lowers your costs considerably. My fee for a one class registration in these circumstances is $1685. I do not exceed the quote. This includes performing a more comprehensive search, prosecution of the registration, responding to office actions, and the PTO one class filing fee.

A more comprehensive search is necessary to avoid infringing a prior common law user in a different market. It is posible that someone in a different market may be using a name or logo for a class of goods and services that is confusingly similar, but they have not registered the trademark/service mark, nor are they using it on the internet. Therefore a simple PTO, state trademark office, and google search may not be enough. As I stated above, the more comprehensive search is included in my fee.

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Answered on 3/11/09, 1:49 pm

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