Q?Forming a Business in New York: An Overview

The New York State Division of Corporation provides a helpful guide on how to start a business in New York: http://www.dos.ny.gov/corps/pdfs/formingbus.pdf

Contact us at 917-426-2659 for detailed assistance.

Q?What is a trademark?

A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol or design, or a combination thereof, that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods of one party from those of others.

Q?What is a service mark?

A service mark is a word, phrase, symbol or design, or a combination thereof, that identifies and distinguishes the source of a service rather than goods. The term trademark is often used to refer to both trademarks and service marks.

Q?Do I have to use my mark in commerce before I file a trademark application?

No.  If you have not yet used your mark in commerce, but intend to use it in the future, you may file on an intent to use basis.

Q?How long will it take for my trademark to register?

Trademark processing times can take anywhere from 10-12 months (sometimes longer) depending on the basis for filing and the legal issues that may arise in the examination of the application.

Q?How long does a trademark registration last?

The registration is valid as long as you timely file all post registration maintenance documents. You must file a “Declaration of Use under Section 8” between the fifth and sixth year following registration. In addition, you must file a combined “Declaration of Use and Application for Renewal under Sections 8 and 9” between the ninth and tenth year after registration, and every 10 years thereafter. If these documents are not timely filed, your registration will be cancelled and cannot be revived or reinstated

Q?Can I trademark the name of a musical group or band?

A band name may function as a service mark for entertainment services in the nature of performances by a musical group if it is used to identify live performances.

Q?Federal vs. State Trademarks – who wins?

Date of first use of the mark will determine trademark rights in connection with federal vs. state trademarks. If the state mark was in use before the date of first use of the federally registered mark, the prior state user may have some rights to use the mark, but those rights would be limited to a certain geographical area, usually the state where the mark has been registered and used.

Do you have a trademark question?
Please feel free to submit trademark questions on the Contact Us page and we will provide a response.