Paul C. VanSlyke, Senior Counsel at Hoover Slovacek LLP
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Additional evidence for trademark registration may be required

Protecting intellectual property is a vital part of the success of any business. Making a company stand out among other businesses here in Texas often requires a trademark. Protecting it requires trademark registration, and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office may require additional evidence before granting a company's request.

In some cases, providing all relevant materials and documents could include a "specimen of use" from an applicant. This could be a product sample bearing the trademark if it pertains to goods. If it pertains to services, it could be a pamphlet, flyer or some other documentation bearing it. These real world examples provide an example of how a business intends to use it and could be a variety of objects or document.

If a company already uses the trademark, then specimens for all goods or services using it should be submitted with the original application. If a business files for one not yet used, then those specimens should accompany the document for Allegation of Use. Only domestic applications may require this type of evidence. An application could be denied without this information. If that happens, all fees will be refunded as well.

Determining whether a specimen of use is required for a particular trademark registration may not be an easy task. Of course, the USPTO may send a notice of its requirement, but then a Texas business owner could be faced with knowing what will provide the best evidence. Working with an intellectual property attorney could answer all of the relevant questions, which could avoid unnecessary delays or denials from the start.

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