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A trademark is “abandoned” when:

  1. it is no longer used in commerce, and its owner no longer intends to use the trademark in commerce. Three consecutive years of non-use is prima facie evidence of abandonment. Use means ordinary use in the course of commerce and not just token sales in an attempt to reserve a right in the mark; or
  2. the owner’s conduct, including acts of omission & commission, causes a mark to become the generic name for the goods or services on or in connection with which it is used, or otherwise to lose its significance as a mark.

Examples of a trademark owner’s conduct which causes a mark to lose its significance are:

  • not policing the mark;
  • assigning a trademark without goodwill;
  • uncontrolled licensing;
  • failure to object to use by others;
  • production of various types and quality of products; and
  • substantial & repeated changes in the mark

Abandoned Trademarks enter the public domain and are available to the first user.

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