If you’re a small business owner, you will probably think twice before paying for a trade mark. The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) filing fee for a trademark costs $275 – $375 per class of good or service, so the costs could pile up, depending on how many categories or classes your product or service can be categories falls under.
Trademarks can be used to protect the use of your business name, the title of a book or even a domain name. Sure you can unofficial mark your unregistered product or service with the TM or SM symbols to provide informal notice of your mark, but you cannot use the ® mark until you have formally registered your mark with the USPTO.
You may say, what’s the difference, as long as I provide notice to others of trademark ownership? Notice is notice, right? Well, yes but no.
*Besides, providing a trademark owner the right to sue, federal trademark registration provides presumptive evidence of trademark ownership.
*Registration establishes conclusive and incontestable ownership rights to a trademark after the five years.
* Trademark registration gives the trademark owner the right to collect triple damages, plus attorney’s costs from their infringer in a trademark infringement lawsuit. All in all, trademark registration gives the trademark owner an advantage in successfully resolving their trademark infringement claim.
Since trademarks can be used to protect the use of your business name, the title of a book or even a domain name, trademarks are an important factor for any business owner to consider.