What is the USPTO

The USPTO is the abbreviated term for the United States Patent and Trademark Office. This office is the intellectual property registry for the USA and is responsible for issuing patents and trademark rights within US territory. Owners who wish to register their intellectual property rights in America are advised consult with a professional consultancy firm to ensure your mark is in line with the standards set by the USPTO.

Responsibilities of the USPTO

All trademark owners who are domiciled in the US will need to register their mark with the USPTO before they can seek international registration rights in other countries. In order to seek official ownership over your mark you must apply to the USPTO with the appropriate form and application fee. It is vital that your intellectual property meets all prerequisites as set by the US trademark registry, if not; you may risk losing your application free and your application could be rejected.

Once a trademark is registered with the USPTO, it is officially inputted in the USPTO mark database. The owner will gain a set of exclusive rights in regards to the usage of the mark and this will provide them with legal protection in the event of infringements and passing off. Mark owners who register their property with the USPTO will only obtain exclusive rights over their property within the boundaries of the USA and no further. For rights in other countries, owners can apply through WIPO (World Intellectual Property Office).

The US registry has a number of responsibilities within the scope of intellectual property. Receiving trademark registration applications and approving or rejecting the applications are just some of the USPTO’s primary activities. The registry further advises the US President, Secretary of Commerce and US Government agencies on matters relating to intellectual property in America. The registry also provides protection and enforces the necessary trademark and patent legislation to promote a fair, competitive and strong intellectual property market.

Additionally, the USPTO reinforces and maintains the standards as set by the Lanham Act, which provides all the requirements, obligations, restrictions, and remedies applicable to trademarks registered in America.

The USPTO provides trademark registration for a period of 10 years and, unlike many other countries, renewal is required after the first 5 years of registration. Professional consultancy firms or specialist attorneys can assist with the registration and renewal processes as these procedures can be complex without professional guidance of an experienced person.