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Is there an optimal time to file for a trademark so it can be processed faster by the USPTO?

Allentown, PA |

I just created a startup company and I want to start my own line of products. The trademark would be for the product and NOT the company name. From what I have heard, a trademark usually takes 8-9 months (federal trademark). However, I do know someone who filed with Legalzoom and got his trademark within 2 months. I don't know if there is a specific time to apply with the USPTO to get the paperwork moving faster? Maybe that is why he got it so fast or does it depends on the wording of the brand? As of right now, I don't believe the USPTO has the name/brand of what I want so perhaps it would process faster?

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Attorney answers 5


Whatever your friend got from Legalzoom, it wasn't a federal trademark registration. You cannot get a federal trademark registered in 2 months. Please, please don't try to apply for registration of a federal trademark on your own. The fees are substantial and nonrefundable. Not every product name is entitled to trademark protection, and a search must be done to verify that the name you want to register is available. A decision must also be made as to the classes of goods or services for which to seek registration. I have seen many applications abandoned because the filer was not an attorney and didn't know how to correct the issues raised by the examining attorney at the USPTO. Use the Avvo search function to find a local trademark attorney to help you. Good luck!


No one "gets" a trademark. The Trademark Office has no authority to grant trademark rights. All it can do is REGISTER already-existing rights. Yes, it is well-worth the time and money to federally apply to register the word or phrase or logo or whatever it is that you want to use as a brand identifier. But it is FAR more important to have your own trademark attorney "clear the rights" to that brand identifier, to advise you on whether it will be a strong or weak mark, to help register with the federal and state trademark offices, to assist you in affixing the proper trademark notices to the mark, and to provide you with advice as to how to properly use the mark once it's selected. In short, branding is NOT a do-it-yourself job and neither is legally protecting the mark once it is adopted. Speak with your own Pennsylvania-licensed trademark attorney. Good luck.

The above response is general information ONLY and is not legal advice, does not form an attorney-client relationship, and should NOT be relied upon to take or refrain from taking any action. I am not your attorney. You should seek the advice of competent counsel before taking any action related to your inquiry.


Short Answer: No

There is no "optimal" time for filing a trademark application. Also, it is very unlikely that you can get a trademark application allowed in two months. Remember, though trademark rights are created by USE of the mark. Registration is merely evidence of ownership. It does NOT, by itself, create rights in the mark. So you need not be overly concerned with getting your mark allowed as long as you continue to use it, your rights are intact. Your trademark attorney can advise you on your specific situation and how best to protect and strengthen your trademark rights. Good Luck.


Two months is too quick for registration. Remember, there is a 30 day publication period as well. Two months to issue approval or notice of allowance I suppose is possible, but not likely.

Either way, there is nothing you can do about it. However long the USPTO will take once the application is submitted is out of your hands. I always say allow anywhere from 4-12 months, but you should be able to move forward predicated on the strength of your due diligence. And unless you are a gambling man, I would not go with a non-lawyer DIY site to handle this. I have seen way too many messes. Also, be your own best friend here, any company that uses a slogan and purports to "put the law on your side" but has to legally disclaim that they CANNOT offer any legal advice you should be very wary of.

Further, whenever you endeavor into investing in a trademark it is very important that you conduct the proper clearance due diligence upfront and before you submit an application to the USPTO. In the US, this means searching under both federal (USPTO) as well as common law because trademark rights stem from use in this country NOT registration. This means that acquiring a federal registration does not necessarily mean that you are not infringing on another's intellectual property. See the link below for a detailed explanation of the due diligence process and a guide on how to choose a strong trademark.

I suggest that you consult with a lawyer in private and discuss your objectives in more detail. You can start by calling around to several for a free phone consultation, get some insights then pick the best fit to work with.

Best regards,
Natoli-Lapin, LLC

DISCLAIMER: this is not intended to be specific legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. No attorney-client relationship is formed with the law firm of Natoli-Lapin, LLC on the basis of this posting.


No, there is no specific time to apply that will get the paperwork moving faster. The fastest way to get your mark to register would be to hire a trademark attorney to do it for you.

You might want to tell your friend he should talk to an attorney as well. There is about a 3 month wait to even be assigned an examiner and a 30 day opposition period later in the application process. So even if the examiner allowed the mark immediately on the exact day they are assigned it and it was published immediately (which it won't be), it would take at least 4 months from the date of filing for final registration.

I have had many clients come to me after they tried their luck at doing it themselves. You might think you will be saving a few dollars, but often you will end up having to hire an attorney anyways when you get an office action from the trademark office and do not know how to respond. Might as well get it done right and hire someone up front.