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The Law Office of Joan I. Norek

        Intellectual Property

            Chicago, Illinois

                                                             w w w . n o r e k l a w . c o m  
 
 

 

Trademarks

Trademarks Directory
About Trademarks
More on Trademarks
Why Protect a Trademark
Trademarks vs Patents
Trademark Infringement
Trademark Internet Issues
Trademark Weight
Trademark Myths
TM Searches - Basic
TM Searches - Corporate
TM Pre-filing Assessment
About TM Registrations
Registration Process Outline
TM Registrations - Standard
TM Registrations - Corporate
TM Stand. Registration Order
Naming & Branding
About Domain Names
Names as Trademarks
Slogans
Oppositions
Cancellations
Trademark Consultations
On-Line Order Searches

 

 

Trademarks

Trademarks Directory
About Trademarks
More on Trademarks
Why Protect a Trademark
Trademarks vs Patents
Trademark Infringement
Trademark Internet Issues
Trademark Weight
Trademark Myths
TM Searches - Basic
TM Searches - Corporate
TM Pre-filing Assessment
About TM Registrations
Registration Process Outline
TM Registrations - Standard
TM Registrations - Corporate
TM Stand. Registration Order
Naming & Branding
About Domain Names
Names as Trademarks
Slogans
Oppositions
Cancellations
Trademark Consultations
On-Line Order Searches

   

 

 


Trademarking a Name

 

Can you trademark your name?
Can someone else trademark your name?
Can you trademark someone else’s name?

three questions  -  three answers below

Can you trademark your name?

  • A name “identifying a particular living individual” cannot be registered as a trademark without written consent.  15 U.S.C. §1052(c).

  • The name in question does not have to be a full, or legal, name.

  • If it’s your name and your registration application, your consent will either be presumed or easily provided.

  • You must, of course, use your name as a trademark or service mark in commerce.


Can someone else trademark your name?

  • A name “identifying a particular living individual” cannot be registered as a trademark without written consent.  15 U.S.C. §1052(c).

  • The name in question does not have to be a full, or legal, name.

  • The “your name” factor alone is insufficient.

  • You must be sufficiently known in the field of the product or service that an association between you and the trademark will be made by the relevant public, or

  • You must be so well known that the name will invariably be associated with you (such a Prince Charles).

  • The same principles apply to trademark use.

  • Your remedies are opposing a registration application if it successful passes the registration stage or a Section 43(a) trademark action.


Can you trademark someone else’s name?

  • A name “identifying a particular living individual” cannot be registered as a trademark without written consent.  15 U.S.C. §1052(c).

  • The name in question does not have to be a full, or legal, name.

  • This impediment to trademark and/or use protects privacy rights and publicity rights that living persons have in the designations that identify them.

  • Publicity rights of celebrities routinely survive their deaths, so the impediment to trademark registration and/or use extends to deceased celebrities.

  • Whether intended or not, if the public would recognize and understand the trademark as identifying a particular person, consent is required.

  • Such public identification means the person is sufficiently known in the field of the product or service that an association between the person and the trademark will be made by the relevant public, or

  • The person is so well known that the name will invariably be associated with the person (such a Prince Charles).

other topics - trademark registrations, trademark myths, naming and branding, oppositions, trademark searches, slogans

 

questions, inquiries - contact the firm (all contact modes) or call 312.419.8055

 

 
       


The Law Office of Joan I. Norek
25 E. Washington Street, Suite 1400
Chicago, Illinois  60602
Tel.  312.419.8055   Fax 312.236.6686
Contact the Firm

 

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Copyright © 2004 - 2014 Joan I. Norek, The Law Office of Joan I. Norek 
All rights reserved.
noreklaw, noreklaw.com and PatentAttitude are trademarks and service marks of Joan I. Norek, Chicago, Illinois.

Use of this website does not create an attorney-client relationship.  This website provides information and resources but is neither legal advice nor a substitute for the legal advice of an IP attorney.  Retentions are subject to the discretion of the firm.
This website was designed and constructed by Joan I. Norek.