Unlike other intellectual property such as copyrights and patents, a trademark is forever. It lives for as long as your business does. Much like copyrights, trademarks need to be registered in order to be enforceable in court. Registering a trademark has many dimensions to consider. Your mark needs to represent your business while not infringing anyone else's trademark. Your choice should have meaning within your industry. It needs to be memorable and recognizable. When someone sees your trademark they need to instantly identify it with your business and not someone else's. Trademarks also have several different scopes in which one could register:
A trademark has to be unique within its industry. For instance you could open a Marvel Carwash, and so long as you don't use the exact imagery of a certain well known comic book brand you would be okay. That being said there is a fine line between having a similar mark in a different industry and having one that could be misinterpreted to be an endorsement or affiliation with some other company.
Trademarks can be registered on the state level - indeed many are limited to just that. If you own a bar in Massachusetts it doesn't make much sense to register a trademark in California as well. Selecting where to register is an important decision.
If you have goods or services that reach beyond a particular state you will need to register them on a national scale. Likewise if you do business internationally marks in other countries will be required as well. Each registration requires research, possible refinement, and filing fees. Foreign countries may have other requirements and restrictions that need to be considered.
A lot to consider
Considering all the scopes and dimensions of your business' trademarks can be a time consuming task. The broader the scope the more research and registrations that need to be done. Getting rejected in just one case can cost many hundreds of dollars in filing fees needed to resubmit a refinement. Attorney Wheelock has handled these complexities many times before, and can guide you through this process - helping you to develop the best trademark possible for your business while reducing potential costs. He can also help you protect and enforce your marks should someone try and benefit from your reputation by misusing them.
Attorney Wheelock has the creativity and experience to help you design a superior mark for your business.
He can help you handle all the complexities of multiple registrations over multiple scopes.
If someone is using your mark without your permission, Attorney Wheelock can help you protect your business' reputation