Can I Trademark a Name Already Being Used?
Trademarks are generally considered an area of the law (well, like much of the law) where everything falls into a grey area. Such is the case with trademarking a name already being used. When a name is already in use by another company, you can trademark it under certain circumstances. Typically, if the company already using the name is in a completely different industry than you, you will probably be able to trademark the name for your own use. For example, if one company is making tires and you’re operating a beauty parlor, there’s probably not going to be any crossover in the products and services of the companies such that the public would be confused as to which company provided them with their goods and services. However, if your company and the current owner of the trademarked name are in similar or the same industries, you will definitely not be able to trademark your company’s name.
If you have an idea for a business, product or service name, but you’re concerned because it’s already in use, contact us today to speak with trademark attorney Eric Norton to discuss the importance of a thorough trademark search to determine if you can also trademark the name that is already in use.