Successfully registering a trademark can happen as quickly as in seven months or can take several years.
Registering a trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will take nearly up to a year even in the best circumstances. If there are multiple errors, back forths between the USPTO and the trademark applicant or if the trademark is not being used in commerce yet, it can take years to get a trademark registration. Many different factors go into why the process takes so long.
Delays are most commonly caused by the Examining Attorney, i.e. the person at the USPTO reviewing the trademark application issuing an Office Action(s). Office Actions generally delay the trademark application process by two to three months at a minimum.
An Examining Attorney may issue an Office action for not following the filing instructions correctly, not applying for a distinctive trademark, not meeting the trademark application filing requirements, not conducting USPTO trademark searches, not filing quick responses to Office Actions, not using the trademark in commerce, the trademark is functional, submitting an improper trademark specimen, not correctly identifying goods and/or services and more. Unnecessary delays can hurt trademark owners, especially when it comes to issues regarding trademark priority.
If you are seeking to obtain a trademark application quickly, such as wanting to get on the Amazon Brand Registry as soon as possible or receiving the many benefits of a trademark registration, hiring an attorney can help prevent unnecessary delays. Learning how to file a trademark application on your own is not an easy task (just look at all the potential land mines in the trademark application process flow chart below).
Studies show that trademark attorneys are much more successful filing applications than pro se trademark applicants because they are more likely to conduct extensive trademark searches, know how to overcome Office Actions, and avoid issues the pro se applicants are unaware of. In other words, trademark lawyers will do the necessary prep work to anticipate any possible problems and know how to avoid them.
It is also important to note that just filing a trademark application does not mean a trademark owner will be granted a trademark registration by the USPTO. The USPTO examines many different parts of the application, as outlined by the Lanham Act (aka Trademark Act), to ensure the trademark application meets all the requirements to become a registered trademark.
If the application does not meet the requirements, or if the trademark applicant does not complete the process correctly, the trademark application will be abandoned and no refund will be given by the USPTO. It is important for trademark applicants to avoid common trademark application filing mistakes so they do not risk losing their USPTO filing fees.
Flow chart of the trademark application process and amount of time it takes to obtain a trademark registration.
Our years of experience help our clients avoid the common mistakes that are made during the trademark application process. For the quickest possible result in obtaining a trademark registration, contact us today for a Free Trademark Consultation and one of our attorneys will respond within 24 hours.