Trademark Attorney Chicago, IL
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 in Chicago, IL that 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.
Intellectual Trademark Facts
As an intellectual property law office, The Law Offices of Konrad Sherinian has a team of skilled trademark lawyers and paralegals who regularly prepare and prosecute state and federal trademark applications. Having many of experience in trademark law, we have built an impressive network of other legal professionals outside the state and country who are able to assist us in international trademark matters. You should consult with an experienced trademark attorney in Chicago, IL if you would like advice on the availability, use, and enforcement of a trademark.
Do I need trademark or copyright protection?
It might be difficult to understand whether or not you need to register a trademark or a copyright. Both are a type of intellectual property and can protect the rights to your creation or idea. However, a trademark attorney for Chicago, IL can tell you that there is a big difference between the two.
A copyright is a type of protection for an author’s “original works of authorship”. This could include music, art, screenplays, literary works, and so forth. Copyright does not protect intellectual property such as a slogan, name, title, short phrase, symbol, design, lettering, coloring, or typography. This later intangible property is better suited to the protection of a trademark.
A trademark attorney for Chicago, IL may advise you to take a moment to think about slogans, logos, or advertisements of large brands. More than likely these have been trademarked and do not qualify for protection under a copyright. A trademark offers the protection of a:
- Or a combination of these
These elements will be able to distinguish your product, service, or brand from those of other companies. It is possible that a logo be protected by copyright and trademark, but this will be dependent upon the amount of originality within the logo. In general the more ornate a logo is, and the more creativity it has, the better chance that it could be protected by both types of intellectual property.
If you wish to protect your company name, a custom typography, a slogan, or a phrase, you probably will need a trademark. If you have written a novel and are getting ready to publish it, you will likely want to pursue copyright protection with the help of a Chicago, IL trademark attorney.
The Trademark Process
When you are ready to file for a trademark, it may be useful to turn to an intellectual property lawyer for help. By having a trademark in place, the U.S. government and other foreign entities give you the right to stop other companies or people from using your mark or selling a product that might confuse consumers about where it came from. For example you cannot use the Nike swoosh logo on your new clothing company line. It would be illegal and likely cause many problems for you and your business. Once you hire a trademark attorney serving Chicago, IL, the process will be similar to the following:
- Diligently search current trademarks and file for your trademark (less than 1 month)
- Internal review and examination by the U.S. Trademark Office (about 4 months)
- External review by third party opposition (when applicable; up to 6 months)
- Issuance of your trademark (9-12 months from step one)
- Trademark renewal (prior to the 6th year and before every 10th year following)
The above process is a general outline and may include further steps or smaller details in between. A trademark attorney in Chicago, IL can explain these to you during a free consultation. At The Law Offices of Konrad Sherinian in Illinois, we can provide a search for similar trademarks, fill out your application, and file the paperwork for you. With this you can ensure everything is done right and on time.
When You Need a Trademark Attorney Chicago, IL Companies Trusts
If you would like to speak with a Chicago trademark attorney from The Law Offices of Konrad Sherinian, contact our office. We would be happy to meet and discuss with you all of your legal and intellectual property protection options. Call today us to set up your free consultation!