What are trademarks?

by Charles R. Wilson, Lawyer Referral Service Panelist

Trademarks fall under the general definition of intellectual property law. They are products of the human mind or intellect. Trademarks are used to identify the owner’s products or services and distinguish them from those sold by others. A trademark is a word, name, symbol, or combination thereof. An example is TIDE for laundry detergents. Registration of the trademark can be obtained by filing an application in the USPTO. It will be examined. An issue most often encountered in the USPTO is whether the applied for trademark is confusingly similar to another’s registered or pending trademark.

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