Trademark: Intent of Use vs. Actual Use

Trademark: Intent of Use vs. Actual Use

Today we would like to go over the Trademark process by exploring the difference between an “intent of use” application vs. an “actual use” application.

Our readers are already familiar with the idea of protecting a name or a logo (or a combination of the two) from others entering the market and taking advantage of an already established and recognizable mark.

We routinely offer Trademark services to our incorporating customers. Whether you are planning to launch a clothing line, market the next high tech gadget, design a software or providing legal services (yes, The Document People is a registered mark) we are here to assist you with all the legal document needs.

In a perfect World we would only file “actual use” petitions. That’s when a person is either already using the mark, or at least capable of showing proof that the mark is in use, by providing a specimen. A specimen can be an actual product (shirt, perfume, etc.), for those trademarks that cover products, or a business card, a website, a Facebook page, for those trademarks that cover a service.

But what if the product you want to protect with a trademark is not ready for manufacturing? Sometimes it does take a while for the final product to be ready, and you might want to be proactive and prevent a vendor, or simply an insider, from taking advantage of sensitive information and steal your mark. This is where the Document People’s trademark services comes in.

For those cases, The Document People can assist you with what’s called an “intent of use” petition. In that case you declare to the Trademark Commission that you are planning to produce a certain good or provide a certain service, and that you’ll submit the proof of it at a future date. There are however disadvantages in doing so. After filing your trademark you’ll have to remember to convert it to actual use once you are ready to show proof of use. That will cost you a one-time fee of $100. However, you have only six months from the final approval of the intent of use petition to do so. If that’s not enough you can – quite literally – buy some more time; a six months extension will cost you another $150. You can extend your time up to six times, for a total of 36 months, but every time it will cost you an additional fee. After that, if you cannot show an acceptable proof of use, your petition will be abandoned.

The Document People is a network of independent legal document assistants. In all locations trademark filings and renewals are offered for a flat fee. Visit our stores in Los Angeles County (Woodland Hills, Santa Monica, San Fernando, Van Nuys, Glendale,), Orange County (Anaheim, Irvine) San Diego County (Oceanside) and the Central Coast, as “The Justice People”, covering the Nipomo, Santa Maria, San Luis Obispo areas.

 The information contained in this blog – including information of a legal nature – is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter.