Do I need a lawyer in order to trademark my logo? 4 Answers as of December 11, 2010

I have gone through the patent process, and I understand that it is very complicated, and you really need a lawyer to help with your application in order to be approved. But with copyrights, I know people who have done that on their own without any problems. So what about trademarks? I am trying to trademark my first logo (for my patented product actually). Should I hire a lawyer for that? Or it more like copyrights where you do not really need one?

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DANIEL NESBITT | Hasse & Nesbitt
The owner of a trademark can file on their own an application for registration of a trademark at the US Patent and Trademark Office or at an appropriate office in most state offices. However, the application and registration process may present certain issues that may challenge the uninformed or inexperienced individual, or which only become evident later when enforcing of the registered mark. The granting of a trademark registration by the US Patent and Trademark Office does not come with a guarantee that the registration is valid, and even an error made by the Trademark attorney in allowing the registration of a trademark, while quite rare, may not prevent invalidity. To be honest, the US Patent and Trademark Office works hard to be "user friendly" to pro se applicants, but their examiners and trademark lawyers cannot provide you with legal advice that you might need.

You may want to contact a trademark or patent attorney to obtain assistance with your trademark needs, since you can also learn some trademark protection can be obtained without filing a trademark registration application. Please contact me at your earliest convenience for assistance with your trademark needs
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 12/11/2010
Mark S. Hubert PC
Mark S. Hubert PC | Mark Hubert
Right about smack dab in the middle. I don't know your capabilities so I cant give you a solid answer. What I can tell you though is that NOLO has a book that will guide you through it.

Be advise though there is little room for error in the filing, unlike patents or copyrights. There is no refund for a messed up application.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 12/7/2010
Malhotra Law Firm, PLLC
Malhotra Law Firm, PLLC | Deepak Malhotra
Clearing a trademark for adoption can be tricky and you should probably use a lawyer for that. It can take over a year to receive a first office action so you should not rely on USPTO approval to determine whether or not it is safe to adopt a mark. Also, common law marks that are not registered can cause problems for you. You do not want to end up being forced to abandon your mark after investing substantial advertising in it.

You should consider filing a registration for a word mark as well as for a logo. Also, it is possible to file for variations of the logo (e.g., the logo with text on it as well as the logo without text). A lawyer can help you with these issues. Are you filing based on actual use or filing an intent-to-use application? An attorney can help you decide which is appropriate in your situation.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 12/6/2010
Law Offices of Daniel Richardson
Law Offices of Daniel Richardson | Daniel R. Richardson
You can file your own trademark registration application without an attorney. I will say that the form is deceptively simple and does not deal with all the legal issues surrounding trademark. In terms of complexity, copyright is the simplest registration process, then trademark is more complicated and then patent is the most complicated.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 12/6/2010
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