Written Application Form


United  States Patent and Trademark Office

Written Application Form [PTO Form 1478]


The application must be in English. A separate application must be filed for each mark the applicant wishes to register. Likewise, if the applicant wishes to register more than one version of the same mark, a separate application must be filed for each version. PTO Form 1478 included in the back of this booklet may be used for either a trademark or service mark application. It may be photocopied for your convenience. See the examples of completed applications on pages 16 and 17 with references to the following line-by-line instructions.

LINE-BY-LINE INSTRUCTIONS FOR FILLING OUT PTO FORM 1478, ENTITLED "TRADEMARK/SERVICE MARK APPLICATION, PRINCIPAL REGISTER, WITH DECLARATION"

Space 1 -- The Mark

Indicate the mark (for example, "THEORYTEC" or "PINSTRIPES AND DESIGN"). This should agree with the mark shown on the drawing page. If there is a discrepancy between the mark described in the written application and the mark displayed in the drawing, the drawing controls.

Space 2 -- Classification

It is not necessary to fill in this box. The PTO will determine the proper International Classification based upon the identification of the goods and services in the application. However, if the applicant knows the International Class number(s) for the goods and services, the applicant may place the number(s) in this box. The International Classes are listed inside of the back cover of this booklet. If the PTO determines that the goods and services listed are in more than one class, the PTO will notify the applicant during examination of the application, and the applicant will have the opportunity to pay the fees for any additional classes or to limit the goods and services to one or more classes.

Space 3 -- The Owner of the Mark

The name of the owner of the mark must be entered in this box. The application must be filed in the name of the owner of the mark or the application will be void, and the applicant will forfeit the filing fee. The owner of the mark is the party who controls the nature and quality of the goods sold, or services rendered, under the mark. The owner may be an individual, a partnership, a corporation, or an association or similar firm. If the applicant is a corporation, the applicant's name is the name under which it is incorporated. If the applicant is a partnership, the applicant's name is the name under which it is organized.

Space 4 -- The Owner's Address

Enter the applicant's business address. If the applicant is an individual, enter either the applicant's business or home address.

Space 5 -- Entity Type and Citizenship/Domicile

The applicant must check the box which indicates the type of entity applying. In addition, in the blank following the box, the applicant must specify the following information:

  • Space 5(a) -- for an individual, the applicant's national citizenship;
  • Space 5(b) -- for a partnership, the names and national citizenship of the general partners and the state where the partnership is organized (if a U.S. partnership) or country (if a foreign partnership);
  • Space 5(c) -- for a corporation, the state of incorporation (if a U.S. corporation), or country (if a foreign corporation); or
  • Space 5(d) -- for another type of entity, specify the nature of the entity and the state where it is organized (if in the U.S.) or country where it is organized (if a foreign entity).

Space 6 -- Identification of the Goods and/or Services

In this blank the applicant must state the specific goods and services for which registration is sought and with which the applicant has actually used the mark in commerce, or in the case of an "intent-to-use" application, has a bona fide intention to use the mark in commerce. Use clear and concise terms specifying the actual goods and services by their common commercial names. A mark can only be registered for specific goods and services. The goods and services listed will establish the scope of the applicant's rights in the relevant mark.

The goods and services listed must be the applicant's actual "goods in trade" or the actual services the applicant renders for the benefit of others. Use language that would be readily understandable to the general public. For example, if the applicant uses or intends to use the mark to identify "candy," "word processors," "baseballs and baseball bats," "travel magazines," "dry cleaning services" or "restaurant services" the identification should clearly and concisely list each such item. If the applicant uses indefinite terms, such as "accessories," "components," "devices," "equipment," "food," "materials," "parts," "systems," "products," or the like, then those words must be followed by the word "namely" and the goods or services listed by their common commercial name(s). Note that the terms used in the classification listing on the inside of the back cover of this booklet are generally too broad. Do not use these terms by themselves.

The applicant must be very careful when identifying the goods and services. Because the filing of an application establishes certain presumptions of rights as of the filing date, the application may not be amended later to add any products or services not within the scope of the identification. For example, the identification of "clothing" could be amended to "shirts and jackets," which narrows the scope, but could not be amended to "retail clothing store services," which would change the scope. Similarly, "physical therapy services" could not be changed to "medical services" because this would broaden the scope of the identification. Also, if the identification includes a trade channel limitation, deleting that limitation would broaden the scope of the identification.

The identification of goods and services must not describe the mode of use of the mark, such as on labels, stationery, menus, signs, containers or in advertising. There is another place on the application, called the "method-of-use clause," for this kind of information. (See information under Space 7a, fourth blank, described on the next page.) For example, in the identification of goods and services, the term "advertising" usually is intended to identify a service rendered by advertising agencies. Moreover, "labels," "menus," "signs" and "containers" are specific goods. If the applicant identifies these goods or services by mistake, the applicant may not amend the identification to the actual goods or services of the applicant. Thus, if the identification indicates "menus," it could not be amended to "restaurant services." Similarly, if the goods are identified as "containers or labels for jam," the identification could not be amended to "jam."

NOTE: If nothing appears in this blank, or if the identification does not identify any recognizable goods or services, the application will be denied a filing date and returned to the applicant. For example, if the applicant specifies the mark itself or wording such as "company name," "corporate name," or "company logo," and nothing else, the application will be denied a filing date and returned to the applicant. If the applicant identifies the goods and services too broadly as, for example, "advertising and business," "miscellaneous," "miscellaneous goods and services," or just "products," or "services," the application will also be denied a filing date and returned to the applicant.

Space 7 -- Basis for Filing

The applicant must check at least one of the four boxes to specify a basis for filing the application. The applicant should also fill in all blanks which follow the checked box(es). Usually an application is based upon either (1) use of the mark in commerce (the first box), or (2) a bona fide intention to use the mark in commerce (the second box). You may not check both the first and second box. If both the first and second boxes are checked, the PTO will not accept the application and will return it. If an applicant wishes to apply to register a mark, for certain goods and services for which it is already using the mark in commerce, and also for other goods and services based on future use, separate applications must be filed to separate the relevant goods and services from each other.

Space 7(a)

If the applicant is using the mark in commerce in relation to all of the goods and services listed in the application, check this first box and fill in the blanks.

In the first blank specify the date the trademark was first used to identify the goods and services in a type of commerce which may be regulated by Congress.

In the second blank specify the type of commerce, specifically a type of commerce which may be regulated by Congress, in which the goods were sold or shipped, or the services were rendered. (See page 2 for a discussion of the meaning of "use in commerce.") For example, indicate "interstate commerce" (commerce between two or more states) or commerce between the United States and a specific foreign country, for example, "commerce between the U.S. and Canada."

In the third blank specify the date that the mark was first used anywhere to identify the goods or services specified in the application. This date will be the same as the date of first use in commerce unless the applicant made some use, for example, within a single state, before the first use in commerce.

In the fourth blank specify how the mark is placed on the goods or used with the services. This is referred to as the "method-of-use clause," and should not be confused with the identification of the goods and services described under Space 6. For example, in relation to goods, state "the mark is used on labels affixed to the goods," or "the mark is used on containers for the goods," whichever is accurate. In relation to services, state "the mark is used in advertisements for the services."

Space 7(b)

If the applicant has a bona fide intention to use the mark in commerce in relation to the goods or services specified in the application, check this second box and fill in the blank. The applicant should check this box if the mark has not been used at all or if the mark has been used on the specified goods or services only within a single state.

In the blank, state how the mark is intended to be placed on the goods or used with the services. For example, for goods, state "the mark will be used on labels affixed to the goods," or "the mark will be used on containers for the goods," whichever is accurate. For services, state "the mark will be used in advertisements for the services."

Spaces 7(c) and (d)

These spaces are usually used only by applicants from foreign countries who are filing in the United States under international agreements. These applications are less common. For further information about treaty-based applications, call the trademark information number listed in this booklet on page 4, or contact a private attorney.

Space 8 -- Verification and Signature

The applicant must verify the truth and accuracy of the information in the application and must sign the application. The declaration in Space 8, on the back of the form, is for this purpose. If the application is not signed, the application will not be granted a filing date and will be returned to the applicant. If the application is not signed by an appropriate person, the application will be found void and the filing fee will be forfeited. Therefore, it is important that the proper person sign the application.

Who should sign?

  • If the applicant is an individual, that individual must sign.
  • If the applicant is a partnership, a general partner must sign.
  • If the applicant is a corporation, association or similar organization, an officer of the corporation, association or organization must sign. An officer is a person who holds an office established in the articles of incorporation or the bylaws. Officers may not delegate this authority to non officers.
  • If the applicants are joint applicants, all joint applicants must sign.

The person who signs the application must indicate the date signed, provide a telephone number to be used if it is necessary to contact the applicant, and clearly print or type their name and position.


Last Modified: 3 August 1995

Click here for a related US Patent and Trademark Office document.

THE TEXT ABOVE IS PUBLIC DOMAIN MATERIAL AUTHORED BY AN AGENCY
OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT AND NOT COPYRIGHTED BY THIS
WEBSITE. To locate the original material (which may have been updated) click here.