How long does a trademark last?

A trademark owner does not own a word or an image. Rather, the trademark owner owns the use of the mark to identify the source of goods or services.

Knowing what your trademark protects and how to use it is the key to maintaining your trademark.

When you apply for a trademark, you file a statement of use with the trademark application. The statement shows proof that the trademark is actually being used in commerce (i.e. in the market). A trademark protects the use of a mark to identify the source of goods and services.

If the trademark is not being used then the trademark should not be protected. Trademark protection does not allow for warehousing marks for future use.

How Long Do Trademarks Last?

Unlike patents and copyrights, trademarks do not expire after a set period of time. Once the trademark office grants a trademark, the trademark last as long as the owner continues to use the trademark and can provide proof of the continued use of the trademark.

To keep your trademark rights enforceable you have to keep using the trademark to provide products or services in the mark and periodically show proof of the use of the trademark. If you stop using the trademark for long enough, you will lose your rights to use the trademark.

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