You have a great idea for a brand? Congratulations! But how do you know whether the mark is available?
Your first step should be doing a trademark clearance search. There are two types – a knockout search and a comprehensive search.
But what is the difference?
What is a knockout search?
A knockout search, sometimes referred to as a preliminary trademark search, is a quick search of the USPTO register to determine whether there are any identical marks for similar goods or services. This search doesn’t guarantee that the mark is available or even whether it meets the standards for registrability. But it does let you know that the mark itself is available, so you can decide whether it’s worth it to invest in a comprehensive search.
Trademarkia offers free online knockout search:
What is a comprehensive search?
After a quick search, you may see a list of
possible trademark conflicts. How do you know which of these conflicts are likely to be a problem
and which ones aren't - and whether any of them will require you to choose a new trademark - is
another matter entirely. As Nolo.com's Beth Laurence writes, While you may find hundreds of similar
trademarks being used across the country, you will need to know how to sort through your search
results and determine which trademarks you are prevented from using. In this situation, you may need a Comprehensive Trademark Search.
The comprehensive search is much more robust. The comprehensive search examines additional resources,
which is important because it will capture common law usage in addition to just federally-registered trademarks.
The comprehensive search will compare many possible variations and will check for phonetic equivalents and engage in pattern-matching to identify each important portion of the mark that may conflict with others. Analyzing the search will also weigh the relatedness of the goods or services with actual evidence.
You will receive a comprehensive search report to help avoid duplications of pre-existing marks.
Choose your package
We offer three levels of comprehensive trademark search:
|Trademark Comprehensive Search USA and International Country
||Internet Search - Common Law Search
First we search for the identical mark in all classes. Then we narrow down the search by class and related class. We search for identical live marks, identical dead marks, near-identical live mark, near identical dead marks and similar marks and variations on the mark.
We provide Domain search results for your trademark. If the trademark is a logo with no word element, we search domains matching the entity name.
Common Law Search:
We search the internet for other businesses currently using the trademark, whether they have the mark registered or not. We check Google, Yahoo, Facebook, Yellow Pages, Wikipedia, and Instagram (Baidu, Sogou, for China).
At the top level of trademark search, you benefit from an attorney’s opinion of the results, and legal advice about how to assess your risks and move forward with your mark.
A La Carte package:
This package includes a trademark database search report, USPTO database searches, Google search, and Entity search. The search results are restrictive to mark appearance, similarity, phonetics, and based on the classification of goods and services.
This package includes searches of federal and state government trademark database searches, USPTO database searches, common law searches, business name (entity) searches, domain name search, and internet/social media products and services search results in detail.