The USPTO requires a minimum amount of information before accepting a trademark application for review.
When a trademark owner files for a trademark application, whether pro se or through a trademark lawyer, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) requires a minimum amount of information is submitted before the trademark application will be accepted for examination.
If the trademark application does not include the minimum filing requirements, the USPTO will request the trademark applicant submit the necessary information before the trademark application will move forward.
Minimum Trademark Application Filing Requirements
When the USPTO determines a trademark application meets the minimum filing requirements, it will be published on the USPTO Trademark Status & Document Retrieval system
The Exact Trademark
Obviously as part of the trademark application, the trademark owner must submit the exact trademark they are filing for. If they are filing for a standard character trademark, they only need to type the trademark into a box on the online application form.
If a trademark owner is applying for a stylized or design mark, such as a logo, they will need to upload a properly size .JPG (the USPTO only accepts .JPG files on the online application process). In addition, the .JPG “should be submitted at no less than 300 dots per inch and no more than 350 dots per inch and with a length and width of no less than 250 pixels and no more than 944 pixels, e.g., a pixel dimension of 640 X 480 pixels.” If the uploaded image is outside of those numbers, it may not be accepted by the USPTO.
Owner of the Trademark
The trademark application requires the applicant to identify the legal name of the trademark owner. The trademark owner must declare what state they are based in, their address, and identify what sort of business entity they are, such as a corporation, individual, or a partnership.
Although not required, trademark applicants can also list their website, phone number, fax number, and email address. When deciding whether to include this additional information, it is important to keep in mind that everything in the trademark application will be public online.
List of Goods and/or Services
The trademark application process requires applicants, or their trademark attorneys, to submit the list of goods and/or services used (or intended to be used) in connection with the trademark application. As part of the trademark system, goods and services are broken down into 45 different trademark classes.
If goods or services are not put into the correct trademark classes, the trademark application will still be accepted for review, however, the Examining Attorney will likely issue a trademark Office Action for misclassifying goods or services.
For more information about selecting goods and services, view our blog on the topic.
For trademark applications based on use, trademark applicants are required to submit a specimen of use for each applied for trademark class of goods and services. The trademark application must show use of the trademark in commerce.
For more information on what qualifies as an acceptable trademark specimen, read our blog post on acceptable trademark specimens.
Dates of First Use and First Use in Commerce
One of the last requirements of the trademark application process is the trademark applicant must declare when they first used the trademark anywhere, and when they first used the trademark in commerce. For a detailed blog about what the differences are and what “use in commerce” means, visit here.
Signature of Trademark Owner
Whether the trademark owner is filing the trademark application pro se, or had a trademark attorney prepare and file it for them, the trademark owner is required to sign the trademark application.
Trademark attorneys can request the USPTO send an email to the trademark owner for their electronic signature. To learn more about this process, view our blog post here.
Money, Money, Money!
The last thing the USPTO needs before they will accept the trademark application has met the minimum filing requirements and is approved for examination is the USPTO trademark application filing fee. Trademark applications filed online are $225, which is how most people file trademark applications these days.
Do you want to file for a USPTO trademark application but are unsure if you have everything you need? Contact us today for a free trademark consultation and we will do our best to answer your questions and file a trademark application on your behalf.