We have talked before about how you should protect your business name or whatever trademark you will be using in your business. We have also talked about protecting your trademark and understanding infringement.
But, a question that comes up that often confuses business owners (especially in the early stages) is how do you protect your trademark before you have launched?
Of course, as we have talked about before, using proper symbols are a good start in protecting your trademark prior to filing an application. But, if you haven’t launched yet, how do you protect your trademark?
You see, you can only protect a trademark that is “used in commerce”. So, that means, it is more cumbersome to secure a trademark before you launch. In an application (that is a FEDERAL application), you are required to show “use in commerce”.
That means, you must show how you use your mark in commerce in your application.
The same is true even if you aren’t filing a registration for your trademark. It must be used in commerce or it ISN’T a TRADEMARK. If you aren’t offering anything, you aren’t using it in commerce. So, how do you protect your idea in the early stages.
In this 27 minute episode, we discuss:
- When it makes sense to use Nondisclosure Agreements
- How to put your trademark in commerce before you launch
- How to start the trademark registration process before you have used your trademark in commerce
- A tip for how to avoid extra expense in filing your trademark application early
Referenced and Useful Content:
- Guide to Intellectual Property
- Trademark Registration
- Episode 41: Is Your Trademark Merely Descriptive
- Episode 37: Glad to Be Back – Let’s Protect Your trademark
- Should I Trademark My Business Name
- Trademark Symbols | What They Mean and When to Use Them
- Company Name as Trademark
- What is Trademark Infringement?
- Levels of Trademark Protection
- Trademark versus Service Mark