At Gilbert and Smallman, we’ve worked on many intellectual property cases and we know how complicated these cases can seem for people who don’t work in the legal field. If you’re considering getting a trademark, you may be wondering how the process works. The best way to get specific answers is to reach out for your free case evaluation. That said, we also want to answer one of the most common questions people ask about getting a trademark.
What happens if there’s a trademark for a company with a similar name to the one you want?
This happens all the time. Someone will use the lookup at uspto.gov and find that there’s a company with a trademark that’s very similar to the name they want to register. Does this mean that their filing for a trademark registration will automatically be denied? Not necessarily.
To better understand it, consider that there are two companies using the name Delta. The one you probably know about Delta Airlines, along with Delta Faucets. It may seem strange to have two companies with essentially the same name but it all comes down to one simple thing: Categories.
There are 45 trademark categories
There are 45 different categories for trademark, divided by services and products. For example, there are categories for restaurant services, musical instruments, machinery, medical devices, etc. Delta Airlines and Delta Faucets were both able to trademark Delta because they’re in very different categories – one in household goods and one in transportation services.
It is possible for you to trademark a name that has a similar name trademarked
As you can see, it is possible to trademark a name even if there’s a very similar name – it all depends on the categories. Of course, there are a few other things that need to be taken into consideration as well. If you want to know for sure if your name is likely to be accepted, then you’ll want to reach out to Gilbert & Smallman for a complete trademark search.
When you get help upfront, you can save yourself the expense of filing for something that will just end up being rejected, and you can avoid accidentally infringing on another company’s trademark, which can lead to spending thousands of dollars on your own marketing materials with your new name – only to have to start over. Reach out to us today and let’s get your search started.