TTAB Trademark Opposition – An Early Option to Litigation?

In buy to set the stage appropriately, you are the operator of a trademark, either beneath frequent legislation or pursuant to a United States Patent and Trademark Business (USPTO) trademark registration, and you have determined what you deem to be a pending USPTO trademark software that is very likely to bring about shopper confusion. You have not only identified that this 3rd get together is using a trademark that you imagine constitutes trademark infringement, but you have also recognized, likely as a result of the use of trademark monitoring, that the opposition period of time for this USPTO trademark is forthcoming. The issue will become – what do you do following?

The USPTO has a physique acknowledged as the Trademark Demo and Appeal Board. This board, generally referred to as the TTAB, handles trademark oppositions centered upon a variety of motives. For illustration, the registration of the pending mark in this circumstance would be challenged mainly because it is perplexing related to an present mark to which you claim prior rights. On the other hand, there are other motives that a trademark may be opposed during the opposition interval, these as the fact that it is generic, disparaging, or fraudulent. Regardless, you only have 30 times inside of which to file a discover of opposition with the TTAB. This 30-working day interval is acknowledged as the opposition period of time. This opposition time period takes place when the pending trademark application is posted for opposition in what is regarded as the Formal Gazette.

If your goal is to make certain that your mark remains guarded and enforceable and that there is no client confusion in the marketplace, you have to make your mind up how to technique this infringing use. When a trademark infringement lawsuit pursuant to the Lanham Act in federal court is an alternative, it is essential that you also contemplate a TTAB opposition proceeding. The opposition continuing makes it possible for a single to file a see of opposition, which is akin to a grievance in litigation, and demonstrate why the mark should not be registered. The administrative proceeding is related to litigation in that there are necessities below the federal principles which inside of the TTAB are referred to especially as its Trademark Guidelines of Observe. The moment the recognize of opposition is filed, a standard opposition continuing will include things like the adhering to:

Time to response

Deadline for discovery

Discovery opens

Initial disclosures owing

Professional disclosures because of

Discovery closes

Plaintiff’s pre-demo disclosures

Plaintiff’s 30-day demo time period ends

Defendant’s pre-demo disclosures

Defendant’s 30-working day trial interval finishes

Plaintiff’s rebuttal disclosures

Plaintiff’s 15-day rebuttal period finishes

At the summary of the aforementioned phases, the TTAB will problem a choice as to whether or not or not to sustain the opposition. If thriving, the opposition will be sustained and the trademark will not be permitted to be registered.

Even though finally you would not only want to assure that they did not obtain a trademark with the USPTO, you would also want to ensure that all use stopped. When an order from court of regulation would be demanded to guarantee that all use stops or to gather financial damages, a TTAB ruling might be the impetus essential to bring about the alleged trademark infringer to cease all use of the mark. Extra importantly, it is often less costly than trademark litigation and provides all issues right away to the interest of the get-togethers included so as to permit the likelihood of a resolution. Thus, a TTAB trademark opposition must be deemed as component of any trademark owner’s enforcement technique.

A trademark lawyer that has appeared ahead of the TTAB can assistance suggest you with regards to your certain alternatives, challenges, and approaches. Anyone looking to acquire a registered trademark or looking to implement legal rights pursuant to that trademark needs to be common with the TTAB. A TTAB trademark attorney can assistance.

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