When it comes to registering a trademark or an official statement, many new business owners get confused. Since the term, ‘abandoned trademarks’ sounds a bit ambiguous, they are often unsure of the next step they should take. The concerned entity in your region will decide whether or not your trademark is eligible to be officially registered. Since not all trademarks meet the requirements, they are declared dead or abandoned. Here is everything you need to know about dead trademarks and relevant applications that are abandoned.
Why Did Your Trademark Die?
If you fail to use your trademark with consistency or to renew it before its deadline, it can be labeled as ‘dead’ or ‘abandoned. Even though new business owners have this misconception that trademarks live forever, there are still some challenges and rules that everyone must adhere to. This will keep their trademark alive, which will also reflect in the USPTO’s records. The declaration of your trademark being dead by the Trademark Office is also considered authentic. Note that similar-looking or same trademarks are also not registered by the Trademark Office. This means that the trademark is already abandoned even before the registration has matured. A lack of market research and awareness often causes this issue. Sadly, this is a common occurrence in the business world.
How Can you Revive an Abandoned Trademark?
To answer the initial question, yes, you can revive an application for a dead trademark. A procedure related to filing a petition needs to be carried out by the business owner.
Your Dead Trademark
At times, you may not have the intention of abandoning or deactivating your trademark, in which case, the relevant entity will declare it dead. However, you have the opportunity to revive your trademark, through an application process called Petition to Revive. You must take certain key considerations into account, such as the Abandonment Notice date, marketplace protection, and the process of re-registering your trademark with the USPTO. You are also obliged to take an oath and swear that the delay or inability to meet the renewal deadline was unintentional. Check the date when the notice was issued and mark 60 days until renewal. Some confuse this deadline with the 60-day period they have once they receive the notice, which is wrong.
If you are unable to file an application or revive your trademark through the Petition to Revive, you can look into certain trademark protections that will enable you to use your trademark for your business. Since this route is much more challenging and limited, many try to avoid it. Moreover, you will not be able to use it in any other region. However, if you are desperate to revive your trademark, you can consider this path. Note that if you are accused of copyright infringement, fighting in court with your trademark protection will be even more difficult. To get hold of the rights, you must restart the procedure from scratch and register it again. Take help from a lawyer to fill your application and submit it to the USPTO.
Someone Else’s Trademark
Along with reviving your trademark, you can also revive another entity’s dead trademark and make it your own. Before you officially make the trademark your own, conduct proper research and determine the true value of the symbol. Learn the true reason behind finding the trademark and making it your own. A trademark search should also be conducted to know why it has been abandoned or dead for a long period. Note that just because a particular trademark is marked abandoned on the USPTO list, it does not give you the liberty to pick it up for your own needs.
The USPTO list and status aren’t the sole criteria to decide if you can buy the rights of a particular trademark. If that trademark or the logo is used by the owner to promote their online business or in commerce, you are not eligible to use it on legal grounds. However, if not, you can pick it up and register it under your company’s name. To double-check whether or not the trademark is fully available for use, conduct thorough research and check the company’s website along with their social media and other online presence. Your attorney can help you get deeper insights into this matter. If you find that the trademark is truly abandoned, you can take your request to the USPTO.
The process of registering official and abandoned trademarks can be a bit complicated and difficult to comprehend. While conducting thorough research is advised, it can be a bit challenging without the help of an expert. This is why seeking help from an attorney is highly advised when you’re trying to revive an abandoned trademark.