What is a “trademark” or “service mark”?
Get Legal Help Today
Secured with SHA-256 Encryption
UPDATED: Jul 16, 2021
It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.
We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.
Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about legal topics and insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything legal and insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by experts.
A “trademark” is a word, name or symbol which is used to identify particular products or services offer by a particular manufacturer or from a particular source.
The trademark distinguishes and authenticates a product of a particular manufacturer from similar products offered by others. The owner of a Trademark has the right to prevent others from using the same or similar trademark on their products.
A “service mark” is a form of trademark that is used in the sale or advertising of services. The service mark distinguishes the services offered by one business from similar services offered by other businesses.
Both trademarks and service marks can be registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office – and states can regulate trademarks and service marks used within the particular state.
A mark is not eligible to be registered if it is:
(a) immoral, deceptive or scandalous matter,
(b) flag of coat of arms or other insignia of the United States, or of any state, municipality, or foreign nation,
(c) a name, portrait, or signature identifying a particular living individual except with that individual’s written consent, or the name, signature or portrait of a deceased President of the United States during the life of the President’s spouse, except with the spouse’s written consent,
(d) a mark that resembles one already registered that is likely to cause confusion, mistake or deception,
(e) a mark that is merely descriptive, or a deceptive mis-description, of goods, or primarily a geographical description or deceptive geographical mis-description of goods, or a surname – unless the mark has become distinctive of the applicant’s goods in commerce.