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Trademark Clearance

Trademarks and service marks are marks, such as comprising words or logos, which symbolize a source of goods and services. The name Coca-Cola represents a finicky concoction of ingredients sold by a certain company. By viewing the trademark, a consumer can recognize the source of the goods. Trading off of another's name and goodwill allied with the name is trademark infringement. Even more, using a like name or logo, that is, one in which would confuse a end user, is also trademark infringement.

Simple it is important to know who is using the name earlier than you pour marketing, manufacturing, and legal fees into a name. If your trademark will not stand, then everything you've put into following your name is potentially lost. Still additional, even if you have a domain name or a registered trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, you still are not assured that you can keep the name.

For example, in a 1996 case, a full clearance search was optional and was not carried out and the court went so far as to consider that it may have been bad faith to keep using a mark from the time the plaintiff notified the defendant of the mark. Bad faith means high compensation in addition to the loss of all the marketing dollars put into the name. A Preliminary or Knock-Off Search is inexpensive and usually used to decide amongst a few names. Such searches involve keyword searches such as through the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office database and standard search engines and are accompanied by a introduction opinion. Generally speaking, at least this level of explore is conducted on your name before filing a trademark application by this law firm.