All business owners aim to find methods of being ahead of competitors in the business world. Therefore, a business owner and his team often aim to create several innovations to beat their competition. Even with the most creative owners and staff, ideas don’t come every day.
So, when an idea comes, you should also think of ways to protect them. This is where trademarking comes into play. With a trademark, you get to protect your ideas under trademark law.
Read on to find out how you can choose the right trademark attorney for your business.
1. Ensure they have enough trademarking experience
Every business owner has a reason they are searching for a trademark attorney. They know the importance of a trademark but may not have the required knowledge to do it alone. It’s important to note that not all trademarking attorneys have the same amount of experience. For instance, if our business is in Denver, CO, the owner should ask their Denver trademark attorney what their level of experience is.
Ask about their area of specialization and also the years of experience they have. Next, you can proceed with asking them for examples or references of clients they have helped in the past. Also, check if the clients are in similar industries as yours.
Ask how successfully the attorney has registered trademarks for their previous clients. Attorneys will oftentimes only show their success stories, but from this, you would get helpful hints and information on who you intend to hire.
2. Ask the attorney for things you can trademark
You should set your expectations with your trademark attorney during the interview process. While you might think that this question sounds weird, in fact, it’s quite the opposite. It will allow your proposed lawyer to know how much you want to depend on their experience. Plus, it can also create potential trademarking opportunities in the future.
When you ask them about things your company can trademark, they will provide you with examples of things in your industry that you can make money from when you trademark them.
You may even be shocked at some of their answers. It could range from things like your service, product, or your company name. Regardless of how they answer, it will create an opportunity for brainstorming for potential trademarks.
3. Check their fees
Another thing that you should expect in the trademarking process is that regardless of the attorney that you hire, is a hefty fee. Attorneys and firms charge different rates than others – some charge more, others much less. In some cases, they charge based on the hours used in registering your trademark name.
You should expect anywhere from $140 to $360 per hour. Additionally, ask what the fee is for watching your registered trademarks, additional searches, and also for the trademark application.
Also another vital piece of the process is to monitor your trademark. This means that your chosen attorney must be able to take care of your trademarks and ensure that they are not infringed upon. If your trademark is violated by another person, then your attorney will take legal action.
But, your chosen trademark attorney should be able to provide the prevention of any infringement on your trademark. When added up, these fees could seem much more than what you anticipated. If so, consider a business funding solution that would give you financial freedom and allow you to hire a trademark attorney.
4. Ensure that the attorney will participate in the entire trademarking process
The trademark process is an essential part of your business. But you’ll need the money to pay for it. This is why you must ensure that you get what you are paying for. So, you must ask your potential attorney that you intend to hire if they will be a part of every stage of your trademark process.
It might seem weird to ask this question since you may think they are supposed to do so as part of their job description. But, you might be shocked to know that there are a large number of times that trademark attorneys have delegated paperwork duties to non-legal people like interns.
Since papers are a very vital part, you must ensure that your trademark is free from any mistakes. Thus, your attorney must oversee every process. There isn’t anything wrong with your attorney using others for the paperwork. They might have a busy schedule with other clients like yourself.
What’s important is that they take their time to review your paperwork even when they delegate it to non-legal employees. As long as they do this, you know that you are in good hands with your hired trademark attorney, and you will get the most out of your money.
5. Ensure the potential attorney has a good track record of successfully registering trademarks
All attorneys can apply for registering a trademark. But not all trademarks will be successfully registered. A trademark application isn’t just about the paperwork.
It involves a legal process that takes into account skill, proficiency, and adeptness. Since your business, brand, and livelihood is important, verify the track record of the attorney as it pertains to successful trademark registrations.
6. Ensure you learn about the firm’s reputation
Apart from ensuring that you check the attorney’s expertise, consider the firm’s reputation. Junior associates and support staff might also assist in some aspects of the process. Working with a firm that has a good reputation for handling cases and proper communication would be best.
For every business or the launch of a new service or product, a major priority is to protect your brand. Hiring a trademark attorney can increase your chance of successfully registering your trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
But, when you go in search of an attorney, you will be faced with different choices and also prices in wide ranges. It can be challenging to compare the attorney’s services with the one that meets your budget and the long-term goals you have for protecting and registering your trademark.
But, with the tips mentioned above, you should be able to choose the right attorney for protecting your business.