oklahoma trademark

Do I have to register my Oklahoma trademark to own it?

The short answer is NO, registration in Oklahoma or with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) is not required to stake a claim to ownership. You establish your rights in the trademark based on the first and prior legitimate use of the mark. However, registration, as they say, has its advantages.

For the State of Oklahoma, trademark registration is a “no-brainer.” It is a bit more complicated with the USPTO but the level of protection is much greater. The USPTO provides some solid reasons why you would want to federally register your mark:

1. constructive notice to the public of the registrant’s claim of ownership of the mark;
2. a legal presumption of the registrant’s ownership of the mark and the registrant’s exclusive right to use the mark nationwide on or in connection with the goods and/or services listed in the registration;
3. the ability to bring an action concerning the mark in federal court;
4. the use of the U.S registration as a basis to obtain registration in foreign countries; and
5. the ability to file the U.S. registration with the U.S. Customs Service to prevent importation of infringing foreign goods.

The take away here is: (a) register your Oklahoma trademark with the Oklahoma Secretary of State immediately or sooner; (b) consider whether you need federal protection for trademark.

Posted by Shawn Roberts in Blogposts

To protect your business, Oklahoma trademark registration is a no-brainer

What is a no-brainer? It is something that is so simple you don’t have to think about, just do it. Registering your business name and logo with the Oklahoma Secretary of State is a no-brainer. This is Oklahoma’s brand of trademark protection and it is something that every business should do.

A trademark is any word, picture or symbol that you use to market or identify your business. It could be something as simple as the name of your business or something a bit more elaborate like the custom artwork that you pay to have designed to identify your business. Whatever it is, the Oklahoma Secretary of State charges only $50.00 to register a trademark.

The Oklahoma trademark process includes submitting the application and paying the fee. Unlike getting a trademark from the federal government, there is no vetting or searching process other than the Oklahoma Secretary of State searching its records to determine if anything is already registered.

Although this process is fairly simple, I have seen courts give an inordinate amount of weight to the first business to register its Oklahoma trademark, when the businesses were in a trademark dispute. You can avoid any issues in your business, at least with Oklahoma law, by going through the simple trademark registration process.

If you would like to get your business property trademark in Oklahoma, please contact me (sjr@shawnjroberts.com) and I’ll help you.

Posted by Shawn Roberts in Blogposts, Business Law

What is the difference between an Oklahoma trademark and Oklahoma trade name?

The terms trademark and trade name are often confused. It is particularly problematic when someone is trying to register one of these with the Oklahoma Secretary of State. While they are somewhat similar, they have a distinct place under Oklahoma law and in the process of registration with the Oklahoma Secretary of State.

An Oklahoma trademark means any word, name, symbol, emblem, or device or any combination of these adopted and used by a person or business to identify goods made or sold or services rendered by them and to distinguish them from goods made or sold or services rendered by others.

An Oklahoma trade name is is simply the name of a business or person who is doing business under any name different than what they have registered with the Secretary of State. For instance, a person who has Smith Corporation under Oklahoma law, but actually does business as Acme Products, would register the name Acme Products as a trade name by filing a trade name report with the Oklahoma Secretary of State. A business or individual can own one or more trade. Registering a trade name does not confer any trademark rights on the registrant.

To make sure your business is protected on both fronts, feel free contact me anytime (sjr@shawnjroberts.com).

Posted by Shawn Roberts in Blogposts, Business Law