Can I trade mark my name
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20 July 2011
Sarah Palin wants to trademark her name.
The former Alaska governor Sarah Palin has submitted an application to
the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office that is due to be approved within
the next few weeks to trade mark her name. Palin's name would be
trademarked for 'educational and entertainment services' as well as
'motivational speaking services in the field of politics, culture,
business and values,' according to her application. Her daughter
Bristol, 20, has also filed to trademark her name, for motivational
speaking in the field of 'life choices.'
'Essentially, what they are doing is
trying to commercialise themselves' says Neil Friedman, a New York
trademark attorney. It's rare for politicians to trademark their names,
but Palin left office in 2009 and has since become a successful media
and entertainment figure. She would trademark her name the way someone
like Calvin Klein might trademark his.
This tale clearly applies to the U.S but
what if you wish to trade mark your name in the UK?
You can register your name as a trade mark
provided the Trade mark office of your country or the country for which
you are seeking protection considers it distinctive ( in the UK it is
the UK Intellectual Property Office-UKIPO). As to whether a name is
distinctive or not depends on a variety of factors. Generally, the more
common the name is the less likely it will be considered distinctive as
there may be many others with the same name. Likewise, the more unusual
the name is the greater the distinctiveness and the greater the
likelihood that registration will be granted.
In any event, even if you have been
refused registration of your name as a mark either for the reason that
it was not considered distinctive or because someone else had already
registered it you are not prevented from using your name in the course
of your business for ordinary business purposes.
Jane Coyle is a Solicitor and can be
contacted at email@example.com. Lawdit Solicitors is a commercial
law firm based in Southampton with associate offices in London Malaga
and Rome. Telephone 02380 235979
About the Author
Solicitors offer services and advice for litigation,
commercial contracts, Intellectual Property and IT legal agreements. We
are experts in commercial law with a heavy emphasis on Intellectual
Property, Internet and e-commerce law. Lawdit is a member of the
International Trademark Association, the Solicitors' Association of
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2011-08-04 16:47:59 in Legal Articles