What can be done if artwork being used without permission? How? 5 Answers as of July 14, 2015

We applied for a trademark a few years back on the name Samurai Precision Burs. We got it - but did not know that another form had to be filed saying that we were actually using the name. Another company took our name - because we did not file the additional paperwork. Upon perusing their website - we noticed that they are using our artwork as well.....without permission. By this I mean - instead of an actual picture of the "Samurai Precision Bur" we used a graphical representation of the bur. On the representation it had "SP-48". This has nothing to do with the trademark....it was my husbands initials and his age at the time. We had a person design this for us. Also the way the name was laid out - was designed by me. They are using this as well. Is this legal? If not what should be done. Thank you in advance for your kind assistance with this matter.

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Banner & Witcoff, Ltd. | Ernie Linek
You will need to hire a lawyer who specializes in copyright and trademark law.
Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
Replied: 7/14/2015
Sebby Law Office
Sebby Law Office | Jayne Sebby
First check the other company's trademark registration to make sure it includes the artwork. If it does, send a "cease and desist" letter to the other company explaining that you own the artwork on its mark and that you have not given permission for it to use the artwork. Insist that it stop using the mark immediately. Then send a notice to the USPTO stating that you own the copyright to the drawing and that the other company used the artwork without your permission; ask that the registration be cancelled. You'll need to provide evidence of these facts. Third, if you are still using the artwork and the name "Samurai Precision Burs" for your own company, contact the USPTO and ask how you can get them to reopen your application for the mark.
Answer Applies to: Nebraska
Replied: 7/7/2015
Michael M. Ahmadshahi
Michael M. Ahmadshahi | Michael M. Ahmadshahi, Ph.D., Esq.
On the trademark issue, if you've never actually used the trademark then you cannot claim it because the US trademark laws register trademarks that are used in commerce. As to using your artwork, it's a copyright issue, and whoever is using your artwork can be sued for copyright infringement.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/6/2015
Law Office of Kirk Buhler
Law Office of Kirk Buhler | Kirk A Buhler
Our brief review of the trademark database did not find a listing for "Samurai Precision Burs", regardless, artwork is covered under a copyright and not a trademark. A copyright is for an "artistic expression". It not illegal, but they may be infringing on your rights as the creator. You might try sending them a cease and desist letter, or you can contact a local intellectual property firm to review the facts of the case to determine your best option.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/6/2015
Webb IP Law Group
Webb IP Law Group | Jason P Webb
It sounds like they may be in violation of the copyright rights of whomever created the graphical representation.
Answer Applies to: Utah
Replied: 7/6/2015
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