What happens if there’s another company with the same name as yours in another state doing the same service?

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What happens if there’s another company with the same name as yours in another state doing the same service?

Same company in another different and
both are barbershops. Do I need to
trademark my business name? I already
registered it through the State of CA.

Asked on April 8, 2016 under Business Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Registering a business in one state does not stop someone else from registering the same name in another state.
If you already had a registered trademark, you *might* be able to stop them from using this name, though it's not certain: when there is no likelihood of confusion for your customers, trademarks do not prevent another from using the same name, and if you are different states with completely different customer bases, it is not likely that any of your customers will mistakenly get their hair cut in another state--there is very little likelihood of confusion, so even a registered trademark might not bar them from using the name.
If you don't already have a registered trademark, you can apply for one, but again, it would be of limited use in the situation you describe. And IF the patent and trademark office (PTO) did think that there was an any problem with having two barbershops, in different states, with the same name, if they predated you, you would most likely not get the trademark, since the name would not be suffiiciently original.


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