Should You File an Intent to Use Trademark Application?

This article briefly explains the theory behind the intent-to-use trademark application and when should you apply for one.

When you set your eyes on establishing a business for yourself, there are quite a few things you need to take care of. Before getting your company registered, it is essential that you get an insignia or a symbol to represent it.

Even if your enterprise is just a service, creating a unique imprint is necessary.

These insignias, logos or brand symbols are proficiently called trademarks, and they play a significant role in safeguarding the intellectual properties of your company.

The very next doubt that arises is how to get a trademark registered? There are two ways of qualifying your logo to be a legitimate trademark

  1. Registering the logo for actual use
  2. Applying for ‘Intent to use (ITU) ’ the logo

The immediate question now is which one to opt for. The answer is quite simple. If you have already established your company or will do so shortly, you need to register your trademark.

If you are facing a bit of delay in bringing your enterprise to the market but you fear that your insignia might get duplicated or thieved in the meantime, then you can file an application to reserve the logo for your company under ‘Intent to use’.

There are queries regarding on what circumstances an ITU should be filed. If you are not yet using the trademark, you can either wait or submit an application with intentions to use it later.

However, once you file an Intent-to-use trademark application, you have to start using the mark within 5 years and 3 months from the date of application.

On the other hand, your trademark will not be registered until you can show actual use of it in the marketplace with specific goods or services.

Advantages and benefits in filing ITU

  • The first and foremost benefit from an ITU is that you will get to know if your service mark is available. If the logo/ tagline/ mark that you intend to use is already taken, you will have plenty of time to come up with a new one
  • There are a certain set of regulations a symbol/ logo has to satisfy to qualify as a trademark. If your symbol has some initial setbacks, you will get to know and hence correct them
  • By filing an ITU, you reserve the rights of use of your logo. This sidelines the possibilities of your trademark getting infringed. If you find any traces of infringement of your ITU registered mark, you can file a claim to safeguard its rights
  • When an ITU is filed, you earn the freedom to start the registration process before actually using the mark
  • The date of filing of an ITU for a mark serves to be the date of the first use of the mark. Over a thousand of applications are submitted every day. If your date of application is pretty early, the registration process does not feel hectic and prolonged
  • Once your ITU application is approved, you are at liberty to use the trademark whenever and wherever you deem its necessity
  • Even if you decide to change or abandon your mark for some reason, some provisions can help you with that

Once you compile your mark and decide on applying an ITU, the process should be started at the earliest. This ensures a hassle-free registration process.

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