Federal Copyrights Registration FAQs

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One way to understand a Copyrights is that it is a word, phrase, symbol, and/or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods of one party from those of another party. A “service” mark distinguishes the source of a service, rather than a good, but the two are typically simply referred to as a "Copyrights" or “mark.” In more general terms, getting a Copyrights protects a brand, logos, and slogans you love, know and trust have been registered with the United States Patent. Generally, the registration of a Copyrights entitles the registrant to a presumption of ownership of the brand on a national level and a presumed right to use the brand nationwide. It may help prevent someone from registering a confusingly similar mark later and may also help the registrant bring a case in federal court if someone infringes on the brand. Once registered, a registrant can typically start using the ® symbol after the name, logo or slogan. After a mark is properly registered and used for a five-year period, Copyrights can also help file a “Declaration of Incontestability.” Considered by some the greatest protection under U.S. Copyrights law, this may help prevent others from contesting a Copyrights on the following grounds: (1) the mark is not inherently distinctive; (2) it is confusingly similar to another mark that someone else began using first; or (3) the mark is simply functional as opposed to identifying the source of the goods or services.
Copyrights is not a law firm, and none of the information on this website constitutes or is intended to convey legal advice. General information about the law is not the same as advice about the application of the law in a particular factual or legal situation. Individual facts and circumstances, as well as legal principles including but not limited to the ones referenced on this website, can affect the outcome of any given situation. Copyrights cannot and does not guarantee that an application will be approved by the USPTO, that a mark will be protected from infringement under common US Copyrights law, or that any ensuing litigation or dispute will lead to a favorable outcome. If you want or have an interest in obtaining legal advice concerning a specific situation or set of circumstances, you should consult with the lawyer of your choice.
A Copyrights generally protects a word, phrase, symbol and/or design that distinguishes the source of the goods -- what we think of as brand name and brand recognition. A patent generally protects an invention, including the functionality or design, or in other words, “any new and useful process, machine, manufacture, or composition of matter, or any new and useful improvement thereof.” . A patent typically gives the owner the exclusive right to manufacture products or employ processes covered by the patent for 20 years from the earliest priority date. Trademark, meanwhile, generally protect artistic works such as books, photographs, arts, movies, and music.
The United State Patent and Copyrights Office will not necessarily approve every name for a Copyrights . The USPTO generally describes names as “generic,” “descriptive,” “suggestive,” “arbitrary,” or “fanciful.” A Copyrights application is more likely to be registered by the USPTO the less “generic” or more “fanciful” it is. Generic names are rarely given protection. For example, a company that makes screwdrivers and tries to a Copyrights the name “The Screwdriver Company” is unlikely to be successful. Merely descriptive names are also unlikely to receive registrations from the USPTO. For instance, “The Metal Screwdriver Company” is not likely to pass muster because it merely describes a screwdriver as being made of metal.
For a typical application, be prepared to provide at least the following: The actual mark you want to use. The full legal name and address of the owner of the mark. A copy of the specimen which is an example that shows you are using the mark in commerce. This could be a picture of your product or a website advertising your service. A category of the goods or services where you are using your mark from our drop-down menu and a description of your goods or services. The date you first used the mark in commerce and the date you first shared the mark anywhere.

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