As a general rule, the first to use the mark for certain goods or services in a geographic area will have a right of priority over later adopters of the same or similar marks in the same area for similar goods or services. There are several exceptions that you can your Austin trademark lawyer about.
The following steps are generally recommended in pursuing trademark protection:
Choose a mark that is different from the marks used by others and doesn’t simply describe the goods or services.
Have an initial interview with a reputable trademark lawyer Austin TX to gain valuable insights into the best ways to use and protect your mark.
Consider doing a pre-adoption or “clearance” search to identify other users of similar marks, both from a defensive view (to insure that you will not infringe another’s mark) and from an offensive view (to insure that your mark is sufficiently different, so that you will be able to build rights in it that can be asserted against others). (Note: availability of a name for incorporation purposes or registration of a fictitious name does not give you the right to use that name if it is deceptively similar to the mark of another for similar goods or services.) Your trademark attorney Austin Texas can help you with this.
Adopt and use the mark on the goods or in advertising the services in actual commercial transactions.
Keep records that will show adoption of the mark for each class of goods, the manner of use, and dates of first use anywhere, first use in each state, and first use in interstate commerce. It is a good idea to keep copies of invoices or other sales records, advertisements and other promotional materials, as well as receipts showing monies spent.
Use the mark consistently, in proper trademark style, as a brand name and not as the name of the product or service itself.
It is recommended to use a superscript “™” or similar designation next to the mark as notice that you intend to assert rights in the mark.