A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol or design, or a combination thereof, that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods of one party from those of others. It can also include trade dress (packaging or restaurant design), sounds (such as the MGM lion roar or the NBC chimes) and smells. A service mark identifies and distinguishes the source of a service rather than goods. The term "trademark" is often used to refer to both trademarks and service marks.

Applying to register your trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) begins a legal process. Legal requirements and deadlines must be met and fees may be required throughout the process. Not all applied-for trademarks register. And if the requirements are not correctly satisfied, it may provide a basis for cancellation of a mark that was registered.

Written By:

Tracy Jong