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Steps to determine availability of a trademark name or slogan

Here are a few simple steps entrepreneurs can take in order to determine whether the name or slogan they wish to trademark is available.

Decide on at least three potential names/slogans you wish to use:

1. Conduct an internet search including the U.S Trademark website for each of the names and/or slogans you want to use…if there is a “hit” you should start planning on another alternative.

2. If you find that one or more of the names/slogans you choose is available, hire an intellectual property attorney as soon as possible in order that they may file your trademark(s).

3. If you find that one of the names/slogans you choose is unavailable, repeat steps one and two again, until you finally get to step three.

4. Filing a domestic US trademark is a prerequisite to using an international trademark, make sure you have finalized your domestic filing prior to moving on to the international stage.

The next time you ponder “what’s in a [trademark] name”, know that a name, image or slogan is worth something to somebody who has or is currently using it and if it is similar to your choice, think of the number $818,419.85 and consider whether you can afford to pay this amount or more, for failing to conduct a name search or before your first sale is finalized.

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