Trademarking a logo is an important legal process that businesses of all shapes and sizes should consider when establishing or modifying branding. The process can help protect the uniqueness and creative visuals of the logo from commercial exploitation and imitation. This is especially important for businesses in Texas where local legislation requires a specific mark registration protocol. The lawyer you choose to represent you will navigate the legal process in order to ensure that the trademark process is timely and successful.

Dallas and other cities located in the Lone Star state require familiarity with both federal and state laws. While the filing process is relatively straightforward, understanding exactly what elements your logo needs to qualify for a trademark is the key to success. Logic would suggest seeking legal counsel from attorneys who specialize in business law and trademark law, and who understand local and federal trademark laws within the state of Texas.

Before You File

Before you file for a trademark, you must first consider how to create a successful logo. Every logo must possess commercial strength. As part of the trademark filing process, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will evaluate your logo for uniqueness, distinctiveness and commercial strength. A good design doesn’t guarantee your trademark will be approved, but meeting these requirements can increase the likelihood of success.

Consider the guidance offered by the International Trademark Association (INTA) for evaluating logos as part of their Standards of Trademark Practice. INTA recommends that the logo should be distinctive, sophisticated, uncomplicated and unique. It advises against utilizing features that would decrease the distinctiveness of the logo, such as a generic or descriptive sign.

Trademarking Element Classification

Changes to the USPTO registration program also stipulate that in order to register a mark for products or services, applicants must identify the mark by the USPTO’s Trademark Identification Manual (ID Manual). The ID Manual divides trademarks into 45 categories, such as “letters”, “numerals”, “figures”, or “slogans”. This classification determines where a logo is placed and how it may be used. Understanding the placement of the logo in accordance with the ID Manual informs the applicant of the legal advantages and disadvantages associated with the trademark application.

Federal Registration

Once the basic requirements have been met, consider filing your trademark federally. Not only does filing offer exclusive rights to those filing in all 50 states, but the USPTO potentially monitors and enforces registration. If a third-party has trademarked a logo too similar to your own, the USPTO may alert you and offer up remedies to the problem.

Working with a Professional

Hiring a professional to assist in the trademark process may provide additional protection and assurance that your organization’s intellectual property is adequately protected. Working with a qualified lawyer of UpCounsel with experience in business law and trademark will increase the likelihood of having your mark accepted by the USPTO.

Navigating the legal process requires knowledge and understanding of how logos may be classified, as well as application rules for the USPTO registrant programs. The complexity of the trademark process drove America’s business owners to local professional lawyers for help. With the help of a Dallas lawyer experienced in business and trademark law, your organization can trademark a logo with confidence that ensure your business and its brand identity will remain adequately protected.


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How to Trademark a Logo