Trademark Talk with Erin Ep. 3: What is Use in Interstate Commerce?
Episode 3 of Trademark Talk with Erin has recently published on YouTube and is available for viewing! Trademark Talk with Erin provides information on trademarks, which may be beneficial to your company or business. There are many pitfalls to avoid when filling a trademark application. We are focused on the nuances of trademark law and can answer any questions you may have in this area. With that in mind, let’s discuss “use in commerce!”
Use in Commerce
Use in commerce is not always easy to understand. But thankfully, the Trademark Manual of Examining Procedure (TMEP) has laid out the definition of use in commerce. The TMEP states that use in commerce “means the bona fide use of a mark in the ordinary course of trade, and not made merely to reserve a right in a mark.”
The TMEP also further clarified as to what may be “use in commerce.” Under the TMEP, a “mark shall be deemed to be in use in commerce–
- (1) on goods when—
- (A) it is placed in any manner on the goods or their containers or the displays associated therewith or on the tags or labels affixed thereto, or if the nature of the goods makes such placement impracticable, then on documents associated with the goods or their sale, and
- (B) the goods are sold or transported in commerce, and
- (2) on services when it is used or displayed in the sale or advertising of services and the services are rendered in commerce, or the services are rendered in more than one State or in the United States and a foreign country and the person rendering the services is engaged in commerce in connection with the services.”
How a Trademark Attorney can help.
In order to register your trademark, you must show the USPTO how you are using the trademark in commerce in connection with the products or services listed in the application. If a trademark application does not show “use in commerce,” it will be rejected. Fortunately, trademark attorneys are familiar with “use in commerce” and what may or may not be considered use in commerce. They can guide you through the process of how to satisfy the use in commerce requirement and the trademark application process.
Are you Required to Show Use Right Away?
You can submit the example, known as a “specimen of use,” along with the initial trademark application, or for an extra fee, you can file an “intent to use” application, where you tell the USPTO how you intend to use the trademark in the future, and then submit that specimen of use once the trademark application has been allowed. This gives you some time in between telling the USPTO that you intend to use the mark and the deadline to show use in commerce.
For more information on trademark uses and dates of use, click here.
What are your thoughts on use in interstate commerce? Leave a comment below to let us know what you think!
Watch Episode 3 of Trademark Talk with Erin right here!
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Disclaimer: This article is not legal advice. It is only for educational or entertainment purposes only. Please do not use the article or contents of the article without permission. For legal advice and questions, please contact registered Patent Attorney Vincent LoTempio.