The cost of trademarking your company name on a federal level in the US falls between $250 and $750, based on the USPTO's guidelines. It's important to know about trademark costs while building your brand. To safeguard your brand and prevent unauthorized usage by rivals, the trademarking process for a company name is well worth the effort. A company's name is one of its most important assets. You can receive countrywide protection from other companies that might be tempted to use a similar name by registering your company name as a trademark with the United States Patent Trademark Office (USPTO).
Importance of Trademark
Numerous advantages come with business trademark registration, and it can stop rivals from using your company's assets. However, trademark registration can also be difficult and expensive. Here, we'll outline the main steps and associated fees so you can know how much it costs to trademark a company name.
Once your company name has been given trademark protection, you can prevent anyone from using it in a related field of business. Conducting a trademark search to uncover potential conflicts is the first step in the federal trademarking process for a name. After ensuring no conflicts, you must submit a trademark registration application to the USPTO. You must describe the mark and the category of services or goods for which it will be used in commerce in the application.
If your application is accepted, the USPTO issues a mark for your company name, which then receives federal trademark protection from infringement on a global scale and enables you to affix the esteemed ® sign to your products and services. Additionally, it gives you an advantage if you need to defend your trademark in a federal court infringement lawsuit. After ten years, you must apply to renew the trademark for your company's name.
Trademark Costs for a Business Name
Here are the various aspects that are considered while calculating the total trademark costs:
Fees for the Trademark of a Business Name
You should budget between $250 and $750 when applying to the USPTO to trademark your company name federally. The USPTO website states that the following factors affect trademark costs:
- The number of trademarks you want.
- The number of product and service categories you plan to register under.
- An applicant may only request a single trademark in a single application. Typically, applications cost between $250 and $350 to submit.
Cost of Filing a Trademark Application Online
The Trademark Electronic Application System is the preferred submission method for applicants, according to the USPTO (TEAS). For each class of products or services, trademark application filing fees typically range from $250 to $350.
Costs of Renewal
The cost to renew your mark after the initial 10-year period has passed, is around $300 when submitted electronically and $500 on paper.
You should budget an additional $600 to $3,000 if you hire a trademark lawyer to help you with trademark application filing, registration procedure, and filing fees. You are accountable for upholding your trademark rights. It's important to keep an eye on your trademark and take swift action if you discover any infringement.
Additional Costs in Trademarking a Business Name
In addition to the above, trademarking a company name will cost you more:
Choosing Multiple Trademark Classes
Before submitting your trademark application, you must decide which class or classes of products and services your brand relates to. Only the category of goods or services that you specify in your application is protected by trademarks from infringement. For instance, the skincare firm "Dove" owns a trademark in the toiletries category, whereas the chocolate company "Dove" owns a trademark in the category of confections and chocolate.
Drawing Your Trademark
Most of the time, your application must be submitted with a trademark drawing. It might be a detailed line drawing or a more intricate portrayal, but it must adhere to the standards for trademark designs set forth by the USPTO. Two categories of drawings exist. A standard character illustration shows text unrelated to any specific font, style, or color. The word "Nike" in plain text serves as an example. A stylized form drawing represents a brand, design, or symbol in a particular typeface, size, style, or color.
Generally, each application is limited to one drawing. You will need to submit two separate applications, which will increase your costs if you wish to protect the text and the logo that make up your company name. Although basic and generally free, standard character drawings may need the assistance of a graphic designer or illustrator for particular form designs. In these situations, depending on the trademark's complexity, anticipate spending somewhere between $250 and $750, if not much more.
International Trademark Registration
International trademark registration is strongly advised if you utilize your trademark on a website, in social media, in online advertising, or in other online spaces. For a filing cost of $100 per trademark class, you can submit an online application to TEAS for foreign trademark registration. Each foreign nation you list in your international trademark application will examine your request and determine whether to accept it according to its trademark regulations.
Maintenance Fees for Your Trademark
The price range for maintaining your trademark is $550 to $1,250. A trademark application is a multi-step process. You must retain your trademark by demonstrating that your company still uses it with the classes you selected when you first applied. The recurring trademark filings you must submit, along with the associated filing fees, are as follows:
- During the sixth year following registration: File a Section 8 affidavit, commonly known as a Declaration of Use and Excusable Nonuse. You'll demonstrate that you're still using your trademark for commercial purposes in this method. There is a filing fee of $125 per class for online submission.
- File a Declaration of Use and Excusable Nonuse along with an Application for Renewal between the ninth and tenth year following registration. You must submit the Declaration of Use form with a renewal application because trademarks expire after ten years. After this, you'll have to resubmit these forms between the ninth and tenth years. The online filing fee for each class is $425.
- Declaration of Incontestability (Optional) This document, also known as a Section 15 affidavit, strengthens your trademark rights and shields it from typical legal objections. The use of this form is subject to various limitations. For instance, before you may request incontestability, you must have used your trademark for at least five years. For online filing, there is a $200 filing fee.
You will receive email reminders from the USPTO before these deadlines if you provided an email address and authorized email communication in your initial trademark application.
- Acquired Distinctiveness: Even if a mark is initially illustrative and therefore unregistrable, it is feasible to modify this with the help of the mark in the marketplace, originally as a common-law trademark.
- Dilution: When a trademark loses its originality, it gets diluted. Dilution can occur through degeneration, blurring, or tarnishment.
In the end, several distinct variables can influence how much it will cost to trademark a company name. Your cost may vary depending on the number of trademark classes, the kind of filing (state or federal), and whether you already use the trademark. Additionally, choosing to work with a trademark attorney will impact your final cost.
Thankfully, trademark protection applications are typically affordable for even the smallest business budgets. You'll be happy to have your new trademark providing you and your company with more legal protection. Contact ContractsCounsel for more such information.