I can’t afford Federal Trademark registration. What should I do?

I can’t afford Federal Trademark registration. What should I do?

Common Law Trademark, Trademark, Trademark Infringement, Unfair Competition
Every so often, I have potential clients in a situation similar to a business owner couple that came to see with me last week; they have a logo or a word or a phrase which they use as a trademark and have actually used it in commerce but, for whatever reason, they cannot yet afford to hire a lawyer to file for Federal trademark registration with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, which can usually involve at least several hundred or more in attorney's fees and another few hundred just for the filing fees.   It made me think that there are other small businesses and business owners who might be in the same boat and looking for temporary alternatives until they can put together enough funds to register their trademark.…
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“Alphabet” Soup: What Your Business Can Learn from Google’s Re-brand

Common Law Trademark, Trademark, Trademark Infringement, USPTO
Last year, search giant Google announced it was reorganizing and creating a holding company with the name “Alphabet”. Google co-founder and chief executive Larry Page wrote, “We liked the name Alphabet because it means a collection of letters that represent language, one of humanity's most important innovations, and is the core of how we index with Google search”. Although a nice sentiment, Google's name change could create legal headaches for the search titan, with hundreds of companies already using the innocuous-sounding 'Alphabet.' If you think about trademarks on a spectrum of strongest to weakest, there are five main types. At the strong end are coined or fanciful names; marks which, on their own, do not mean anything. The “Google” mark is actually an example of such a mark. Be honest,…
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Refusing to Take It Easy, Eagles Sue over Hotel California Trademark

Common Law Trademark, Lanham Act, Trademark, Trademark Infringement, Unfair Competition
As first reported in The Hollywood Reporter, earlier this week The Eagles filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for Central California seeking both an injunction and damages against a couple who (through their California-based LLC) operate the "Hotel California" in the Mexican state of Baja California. The suit alleges, among other things, that since 2001 the couple have gone out of their way to lead potential patrons into thinking that their establishment is connected with the iconic American band, even having served as the inspiration for the 1978 Grammy Record of The Year winner, not to mention having profited off of assorted merchandise bearing the name of perhaps the band's most popular song. On its (lovely) face, The Eagles' complaint claims "trademark infringement" against the defendants, however a closer look…
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