US Patent and Trademark Office, coming from the Patent Office, has undergone a long history. The first patents for inventions were issued in 1641 by the colonial governments. The first U.S. patent laws were enacted by Congress in 1790 under the authority of Article 1, Section 8, of the Constitution. The Patent Act of 1790 was administered by a commission composed of the secretary of state, the secretary of war, and the attorney general of the U.S. The basis of the present patent system is the act of July 4, 1836. Many legislative enactments have modified the original patent law. The most important of these is the act of July 8, 1870, and the subsequent act of July 19, 1952, which revised and codified the patent laws and which amended and constitutes the patent law in force at the present time. In 1849 thePatent Office became a part of the Department of the Interior; it was transferred by executive order of the president to the Department of Commerce in 1925.On January 2, 1975, the name was changed to Patent and Trademark Office.Trademarks Registration Points
Trademarks are federally registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office of the Department of Commerce (USPTO ). When a trademark owner applies for registration, the office will examine the application to see if the trademark meets the conditions of federal law. One important condition is that the trademark is not confusingly similar to a mark previously registered or used in the United States. PatSnap can give you details which can help you avoid problems.How to Decide US Trademark Infringement
Under a 1996 revision to the law, the owners of famous trademarks may seek to prevent use of similar marks, even if used by unrelated products. On approval of theapplication , the trademark is published in the official gazette granted; it lasts for ten years and may be renewed at ten-year intervals for as long as the trademark is still in use. Once a federal registration has been obtained, the owner may give notice by using the symbol ® next to the trademark.
For example, the celebrated trademark "Coca-Cola",
Anyone who uses a mark so similar to a registered trademark that it is likely to cause customer confusion is an infringer and can be sued in a state or federal court. In deciding whether there is infringement, the court compares the conflicting trademarks as to similarities in sound, appearance, and meaning, and compares the similarities of the goods and services. Other relevant factors include whether the competing parties goods are sold to similar customers, through similar channels of trade, and the fame of the marks. Unlike patent or copyright infringement, trademark infringement is defined solely by the likely confusion of customers. The usual remedy after a court trial finding trademark infringement is an injunction prohibiting the infringer from using its mark.