Trademark Search Categories

Trademark search means to perform a search for checking whether the chosen mark, is valid (not used by any company, business, organization, or individual) or invalid (already taken by some other group as their trademark). This search is generally performed before going for registration of the mark or before filing. This search helps to mitigate the risks of trademark infringement. There is no law that states compulsion of hiring an experienced attorney for this purpose, yet it is strictly recommended that attorney can provide better legal opinions (associated risks and profit-making) on this issue and hence they must be hired.

Trademark Search Categories

Trademark search has been categorized into the following three categories:

  • Common law trademark search: Common law trademark search includes searching for trademarks which are registered, as well as those which are not registered (in USPTO databases), but still are in use. It is a kind of complete search that includes searching in different domains, such as newspapers, journals, research papers, blogs, social media, Google, Bing, news, public records, business records, etc. Since it is a comprehensive search, it is generally very complex and difficult to carry out and it even incurs most cost than any other trademark search.
  • State trademark search: State trademark search includes searching only for registered trademarks within a confined state. These trademarks are registered and authorized by the state trademark office of a particular area, and its unauthorized use is against the laws of the governing authority of that area.

Another aspect to note is that the state does not create any registration for the date when the mark was used for the very first time. There are a number of states which still uses manual mode of registration and offline databases, which makes these entries, difficult to be found. However, this mode of state registration is much cheaper than the USPTO registration, since it only provides authorization and protection within that particular state. This makes its processing and approval faster and a lot easier.

  • Federal trademark search: Federal trademark search includes searching for registered or pending trademarks in USPTO.  Even its registration procedure is quite lengthy and expensive than the state trademark search, still this search offers much greater search potential (not confined to a single state). Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS)   is a search engine that allows searching and retrieving of data from the USPTO database. But, at the same time, it does not ensure 100% reliability for data fetching. The claims for its infringement can be made in the federal court.

Feasibility Analysis

Choosing between the three trademark search techniques depends upon the size, budget, and requirement of the interested firm. However, it is must to understand the feasibility (capability of using in which area) of each of them. Common law trademark search is useful when there is a need to search for trademarks which are registered and not yet registered, making it useful for huge sized firms, which believes to experience plenty amount of competition from any part of the market. While medium firms can go for federal trademark search, as it searches for registered and pending trademarks.

Another important aspect is to understand that the influence and coverage of federal registration is much bigger than the state registration. Therefore, a federal registered trademark (if found to be used earlier than state mark) holds the right to halt the state trademark owner from its usage. Whereas, the protection of state mark only lies within a particular state which makes it much less effective than the federal mark.


Our Services

Our team, at TMReady, offers exclusive and descriptive guide over which trademark search service will be appropriate, on the basis of a size of the firm and client’s requirements. We have a skilled and knowledgeable team of young professionals who can provide the best in time services. Just follow these simple steps:

  1. Select appropriate monitoring or search variant.
  2. Provide complete details about the marks and delivery options.
  3. Place your order by paying us the minimal amount.
  4. Receive the analysis reports within 1-4 business days.

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