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How do I find sub categories of goods and services for trademarks?

Waltham, MA |

I have a logo that I want to trademark. The logo will go on apparel as well as merchandise. I see that magnets and bumper stickers are included under "009", but looking at other applications I see designations like "009. US 021, 023, etc..." Where do I find the meanings of the 021 and the 023, or look up the numbers for other items?

Attorney Answers 6


  1. Best answer

    In addition to my colleague's answer, you can also just do an internet search on "trademark international classes." Do not use the "old" American classes. Finally, sometimes it realy is not simple to determine which class is appropriate, especially where several appear appropriate. That's the time to consult a trademark attorney.

    The above is general legal and business analysis. It is not "legal advise" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyse this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. I am only licensed in California. See also avvo.com terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.


  2. You can go here to do it:

    http://www.uspto.gov/web/patents/classification/selectnumwithtitle.htm

    Good luck.

    This information is intended to be general and educational in nature. It is not intended to be specific legal advice or establish an attorney-client relationship. I require a signed retainer agreement from a potential client to establish an attorney-client relationship and before I will provide specific legal representation.


  3. Candidly, if you are asking a question at that level you are probably not ready to do your own TM application, any more than your own surgery, and should hire a TM lawyer. It is much cheaper to avoid mistakes than correct them.

    021 and 023 are no longer relevant for new applications, only the 009 IC, but you also need to choose items in the class. And properly describe the logo, and search to make sure no-one already has it or one confusingly similar.

    Please read the essay at the link I am attaching.

    And good luck.

    Licensed in Maryland with offices in Maryland and Oregon. Information here is general, does not create a lawyer-client relationship, and is not a substitute for consulting with an experienced attorney on the specifics of your situation.


  4. I agree, this isn't a DIY job because a lot of it's irrevocable, and your query betrays some basic misconceptions.

    Unless you are already using this logo, you'd have to apply fr an "intent to use" mark, which is more expensive and more time consuming.

    Once you submit an application, the fees are non-refundable. While contributions to our struggling US government are appreciated, I'm sure that you don't intend your money to go to waste.

    Another irrevocable aspect to this process is that once you submit a description of your goods or services, you can't expand it, and anything you leave off is lost forever While the examining attorneys (who are really judges for USPTO applications) will sometimes try to work with you, they can't undo your mistakes. Even the simplest and smoothest applications that sail through take 4 months, and if you do one of the many possible things wrong and have to respond to one or more Office Actions, add a year or more, without any guarantee of ultimate success.

    Do your company a favor and practice some preventive law by hiring a trademark lawyer now, rather than later when it's more expensive and maybe impossible to fix the problems you might have avoided.

    Avvo doesn't pay us for these responses, and I'm not your lawyer just because I answer this question or respond to any follow-up comments. If you want to hire me, please contact me. Otherwise, please don't expect a further response. We need an actual written agreement to form an attorney-client relationship. I'm only licensed in CA and you shouldn't rely on this answer, since each state has different laws, each situation is fact specific, and it's impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue.


  5. This isn't the most easily understandable tool, but here's a link to the appropriate International Classification of Goods and Services that you would use for a filing with the USPTO: http://www.wipo.int/classifications/nivilo/nice/index.htm?lang=EN

    Each class is set out in a box in the lower portion of the left sidebar. When you click on the class number, the middle portion of the screen will display the class definition and a an alphabetical listing of specific goods or services within the class. To search for a particular good or service (such as "magnets"), click the "Search" link in the upper part of the left sidebar, and a search box will appear at the top of the right sidebar on the screen. The results will appear immediately below the search box and display the specific goods and services where the search term appears.

    All this said, I agree with my colleagues that you're likely better off hiring an experienced trademark lawyer to assist you. There are so many easy mistakes to be made, even if you're really careful, that spending some extra money beyond the filing fee is generally well worth it. You'll hopefully avoid the risks of losing the non-refundable filing fee ($325 per class) and of thinking you have a validly registered trademark when it's actually more vulnerable and/or narrow than you perceive. In addition, if you also pay for a search to be done, your risk of encountering a conflicting mark at some point and perhaps being sued will be much lower as well. That's not to say you can't do it on your own if you prefer -- the risks are just a good deal higher if you're not experienced with registration process and the law.

    Good luck whichever route you choose.

    The information provided here is general in nature, is not legal advice, and does not create an attorney-client relationship with Will Montague or Montague Law PLLC.


  6. That is the TIDM, found at http://tess2.uspto.gov/netahtml/tidm.html
    These are called classes, not categories. There are some for goods and some for services. There are no "subcategories", that is something that is used in patent classification.

    If you need to ask this question you MUST get an attorney experienced in TM prosecution so you don't screw it up.

    So far, this is free to you. Until you pay a fee, I am not your lawyer and you are not my client, so you take any free advice at your sole risk. I am licensed in IL, MO, TX and am a Reg. Pat. Atty. so advice in any other jurisdiction is general advice and should be confirmed with an attorney licensed in that jurisdiction.