How to trademark a name

Whether you’re an established business owner or just starting out, it’s important to protect your brand and intellectual property from any possible infringements.  Areas of intellectual property such as trademarks are often complex and confusing to many traders but your brand and the reputation attached to it are some of your business’s best assets, so it’s worth knowing everything you can about what it takes to protect them.

Trademark registration gives you the ability to exclusively protect your business name/logo or similar through using your trademark for an indefinite period of time.  When deciding upon your trademark name, you may become aware of other business names very similar to yours which may give you cause for concern about moving forward. Before losing hope it’s a good idea to contact an expert in trademark law to get an idea on where you stand from a legal perspective.

At Quick Off The Mark, we can give you expert advice on how to proceed when faced with the complex issue of similar business names in the marketplace and the ability to register a trademark.

Call today to set up an appointment to discuss your concerns.

How Much Does Trademark Registration Cost?

So, if you’re not quite comfortable relying on common law trademark rights, how much will it cost to trademark a name? Here’s a simple breakdown:

How Much Does it Cost to Trademark a Name?

Item Cost
Total Fee $970
Government Filing Fee (per class) $275
Attorney Search & Filing Fee $695
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Read more in our full guide on the cost to trademark a name.

So what’s this going to cost me?

Another (big) point to think about is the cost. A state trademark registration can be fairly inexpensive ($70 to register and $30 for renewal in California). A federal trademark registration is more expensive ($225-275 to register and $300-400 to renew at different stages in the life of the mark). You can file the application yourself or you can hire an attorney to do so at an additional cost. However, an attorney may save you money in the long run because they can also:

  • Let you know about the strength or weaknesses of your mark
  • Easily complete the online application and registration process, leaving you free to run your business and not figure out how to do it yourself
  • Maintain the trademark and alert you if they find any issues
  • Help with possible infringement matters

Many trademark attorneys will quote a flat fee (say $750 or $1000) for a single classification trademark application, which is suitable for most people’s needs. Other attorneys will charge by the hour. If you use an attorney make sure they’ve done it before! It’s somewhat of a boutique area of law and you don’t want them to use your registration as a guinea pig. Also, there will likely be additional attorney fees after registration if you want them to maintain your mark for you, file renewals, etc.

Recap

You get common law rights in the mark simply by using it, no registration required! Think about the following when determining when you should think about registering a trademark for your business name:

  • If you’re using your own name in your business name registering your trademark is personal preference. If you have the money and want to do so, go ahead! You do get additional rights when you register.
  • If your business name does not include your own name, there is a much stronger case to be made for registering the mark.
  • Remember that all registered trademarks have fees to maintain the registration, so keep that in mind for your future budgets.
  • You can file an ITU application if you haven’t started using the mark yet but intend to within 3 years, but there are additional fees involved if you choose this option.
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