The two trademark databases on the USPTO website, TESS and TSDR, are significantly different with different benefits and drawbacks.
There are two databases at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) that allow trademark owners and interested parties search the Principal and Supplemental Trademark Registers, view relevant information such as filing date, goods and services, and track the status and view documents related to trademark applications and registrations. Although both systems draw from the same information, the search systems are significantly different in how they operate and the way they present information.
Differences Between TESS and TSDR
There are two main differences between the Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) and the Trademark Status and Document Retrieval (TSDR) systems. The first are the search features and the second is the way the information is presented when a user finds a specific trademark.
Users of TESS have a lot of flexibility in how they search the USPTO trademark registers. They can search by trademark, class of goods, owner, application or registration number, and more. In addition, after the search, users get a list of trademarks that fit the search criteria. TESS is the better search system for conducting likelihood of confusion searches on the USPTO register.
Search results in the TESS system for “LOVE[BI] and 025[IC] and LIVE[LD] and SHOES[GS],” which is a search for any trademark application or registration with the word LOVE in Class 25 that is live and has shoes in the goods identification.
The TSDR system allows users who already know the trademark serial number or registration number to view the status of the trademark and documents such as specimens and applications. Users can only use trademark serial number, registration number or international registration number to use the system so it is only good for users who know exactly what trademark they are searching for and the related USPTO identifying number(s).
The limited TSDR search features are only effective when searching for a specific trademark application or registration
Another significant difference between the two systems is how they display trademark information when the user finds individual trademarks of interest and what information is displayed.
The TSDR system is provides more information and material than the TESS system. In particular, the TSDR system allows users to view any and all the documents filed with the USPTO regarding a trademark application or registration. For example, users can see the original application, specimen, any Office Actions issued and Responses to Office Actions, Registrations Certificates, Renewal Documents and more. In addition, on the Status tab of TSDR, users can quickly view the basic information such as the owner, goods/services, Attorney of Record and more.
The documents tab on a trademark registration that has an interesting trademark prosecution history
TESS is more streamlined in its presentation than TSDR, but does not contain as much information. For example, it does not allow users to view any of the trademark documents or the current status of the application. However, it is presented in a way that is easier to view the most important information than the TSDR system.
View of a registered trademark in TESS
Learn more about TESS in our full blog here.
Learn more about the TSDR system in our full blog here.
Do you have any questions about the two USPTO trademark search systems? Feel free to contact us today and we will try to clear up any issues or questions you have.