If you are looking for a professional trademark attorney Chicago IL businesses trust, contact the Law Offices of Konrad Sheridan. Many members of our legal team were engineers and scientists before they became attorneys, so we understand the complexities and nuances that may be involved in protecting your intellectual property. When you need a skilled trademark attorney in Chicago IL, we are the law firm to call.
There are several different intellectual property protections that the government offers, including patents and trademarks. A patent prohibits other parties from manufacturing or selling an invention. A trademark protects from other parties using any logos, phrases, words, or symbols that identify the source of a product. Essentially, a trademark protects an entity’s branding. An experienced trademark attorney Chicago IL entrepreneurs recommend can assist you every step of the way when it comes to obtaining a trademark for your business.
Before you can obtain a trademark, you need to make sure that the trademark has not already been registered by another company. Although you can search in the USPTO’s Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) database, it is important to know that there are protected and valid trademark rights that were not obtained via the USPTO and may not appear in their database.
A trademark attorney Chicago IL residents depend on can do a more extensive search than what is available on TESS. This is important because if you file for a trademark and it is already registered, you not only will have to begin the process all over again with a new trademark, you will not get your filing fee back.
Once it is determined that your trademark has not already been registered, your attorney will submit your application. The application is then assigned to an examining attorney. This can take months. If your trademark is rejected, the examining attorney will issue an office action, citing the reasons, and what the reason or reasons for refusal are. You then have up to six months to respond to the office action.
If the examining attorney approves your application, or once you have corrected any issues outlined in the office action, your application will then be in the USPTO’s Official Gazette. If anyone opposes the application, they have 30 days from the date of that publication to object.
If no opposition is filed, or if any were unsuccessful, the next step is the issuance of a notice of allowance. Again, this can take months. At this point, you are now required to file a statement of use or an extension. You only have six months to do either/or. Failure to do so can result in your application being rejected.
All of the information will be reviewed by the examining attorney. If there is an issue with what you have filed, an office action will be sent – the same procedure as when you originally filed your application.
As you can see, this process can be complicated and just making one minor error can result in your application being rejected. This is why it is critical to have an experienced trademark attorney handling your application.
Questions to Ask a Trademark Attorney
Trademarks can be one of your company’s most valuable assets, so it’s important to work with a trademark attorney Chicago IL residents trust. To determine if a trademark attorney is right for your company, consider asking the follow questions during your initial consultation:
- What Kinds of Things Can I Trademark? You can trademark more than your company’s logo. A trademark attorney in Chicago IL can help you decide what items you can and should register as a trademark. For example, your lawyer may advise you to trademark a product design.
- How Do I Choose a Strong Trademark? If you haven’t decided on a business name or logo yet, a trademark attorney can offer input as to how you can choose the strongest trademark possible.
- What is Your Experience in Trademark Law? If you are trying to register a trademark, you may want to find a lawyer who focuses on trademark law. If they practice general business law, they might not be familiar with all of the complexities involved in the trademark process. Find a trademark attorney Chicago IL locals respect such as Konrad Sheridan. With several years of experience in trademark law, he has a thorough understanding of what is required to protect a company’s trademark and other valuable intellectual property.
- Will You Be the Only Lawyer Working on My Trademark? During the initial consultation, it’s important to find out if the trademark attorney Chicago IL residents recommend you speak with will be the only attorney working on your trademark. If there will be additional lawyers working on your trademark, be sure to ask about their qualifications as well.
- What Are Your Fees? Before you hire a Chicago trademark attorney, find out how much they charge for their trademark services. In addition, do they charge a flat or hourly fee?
- How Do You Stay Current in the Developments in Trademark Law? Trademark law is constantly changing, so it’s important to find a trademark lawyer who is diligent about staying current. Ask your lawyer if they attend continuing legal education programs. If your lawyer can assure you that they are familiar with current and pending legislation that might affect your trademark process.
- What Is the Best Way to Get in Contact With You? When you are registering a trademark, you may have to get in contact with your trademark attorney Chicago IL locals depend on. Ask the lawyer how and when you can contact them and how often they can update you on your case.
- How Many Trademark Cases Are You Working On? Hiring a trademark attorney Chicago IL offers who has a heavy caseload may not be your best choice. If they are overworked, they may not have the time or other resources to give your case the attention it deserves.
When You Need a Trademark Attorney Chicago IL Companies Trusts
If you would like to speak with a Chicago trademark attorney from Sherinian Law, contact our office today. We would be happy to meet and discuss with you all of your legal and intellectual property protection options.