Business Advice

How to Get a Trademark Registration

February 18, 2014
Registered Trademark Symbol

We are asked how to get a trademark in the United States. You must actually sell goods or services in New brand owners often ask how to get a trademark registration. In the United States, you must sell goods or services in interstate commerce (across state lines) containing the trademark. In much of the rest of the world, use is not required to get a trademark registration, since the first to register can obtain rights, even over a prior user.

Valid use means the trademark must appear on the goods, the packaging for the goods, or displays associated with the goods. When it comes to selling products on the Internet, the “displays” require one offer the product for sale with an online shopping cart that allows for purchase of the product or services.

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How to Copyright a Name

January 16, 2014

Clients new to the process of trademark registration sometimes ask first “how to copyright a name?” People confuse the terms trademark and copyrights, since patents trademark and copyrights were long ago lumped together by tradition. They are in fact separate and completely different areas of law and expertise. The correct question to ask is “how to trademark a name?” There is no such thing as copyright protection for a name. Instead, a copyright protects the artistic expression of an idea, such as a song, book, photograph, or art. The name of a product or service is covered by a US trademark, so “trademarking a name” is the more appropriate phrase. A trademark serves to identify and distinguish one merchant’s product or service from another.

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Shhh, Can You Keep the Company Secrets?

January 23, 2013

How should a company manage and protect confidential information, the company secrets? Learn best practices as to employees and third parties

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LoudTrax Interview + Music Law Advice

November 7, 2012

Strengthened by Cheryl Hodgson’s extensive network in the music industry, Hodgson Legal has a strong history as a leader in Music Law. 

When artists form a band they need to ensure that the band name is legally clear of trademark conflicts, that they can copyright their music and protect their logo. Should the band become the next Beatles, the iconic music “brand” needs to be enforceable.

Cheryl Hodgson participated in a conversation with rock-n-roll website Loud Trax to offer some free advice on how bands can protect their name and brand. For any artist hoping to make it big, it’s an informative read. 

Click here to view the LoudTrax Interview on Brandaide, a website filled with expert brand-building advice.

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