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Research Guides

Federal Trademarks & Service Marks

USPTO definition:

"word, phrase, symbol or design, or a combination of words, phrases, symbols or designs, that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods (services) of one party from those of others"

  • Renewable every 10 years if still in use

  • What am I protecting?  What do I own?

    • The words in the context of the mark for the particular subject area.

    •  Not the generic/descriptive words outside the context of the mark.

  • Pending Registrations

  • Federal Register

  • What makes a good trademark?  Distinctiveness!  Avoid confusion and confusing similarity!

USPTO Trademark Portal

Trademark Basics (USPTO) and Basic Facts About Trademarks (Booklet):  Protecting Your Trademark - Enhancing Your Rights Through Federal Registration

Trademark FAQs (USPTO)

TEAS:  Trademark Electronic Application System

Trademark Searching

  • What is confusingly similar?

    Likelihood of confusion includes:  spellings, sound-a-likes, similar goods/services,  consumers mistakenly believe the mark originates from the same source

  • Keywords, phrases, alternate spellings

  • International Classifications (Trademark ID Manual)

    Is the mark in the same or a related subject area?

  • Logos and Designs (Design Search Code Manual)

  • UW Engineering Library Trademark Searching Guide


Databases @ US Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO):

Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS):  Search pending and registered marks.

Trademark Status and Document Retrieval (TSDR):  Check application status.  View and download application and registration records.

Trademarks Assignments Search:  Ownership information / Changing ownership and searching info


Trademarks are Everywhere!

®University of Washington


Source:  Trademark illustrations from publications or databases issued by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office.