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How do I Perform a Trademark Search?

Article Details
  • Written By: G. Wiesen
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 07 September 2019
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2019
    Conjecture Corporation
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To perform a trademark search you will typically need to contact the government agency that handles trademarks in your country. In some countries, officers within that agency may help you perform searches of trademarks, while in other countries you will need to perform the search yourself. Many countries have websites for the appropriate agency that include search utilities so you can perform the search yourself, free of charge. You can use a variety of different modifiers and conditions to make your search easier or to streamline the results.

A trademark search is typically an attempt to determine if a particular name or logo has already been registered and granted protection as a trademark. This type of search can be done by a business looking to determine if a trademark that has been filed has been successfully registered, or by other businesses looking to see if a potential trademark already exists. A trademark search will usually include the government agency established by a given country to oversee trademark registration.

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Some countries may have agency offices that will help a person conduct a trademark search, and this will usually be the agency involved with trademark registration. You should begin a trademark search by determining how your particular country handles searches and if you will need to contact a trademark agent working for a government office to conduct the search for you. Agents in some countries will work with you to perform this type of search, and there may be a charge associated with it.

Other countries do not assist individuals or businesses in performing a trademark search, and in these countries you will need to perform the necessary search yourself. In the US and UK, for example, you can typically search for a trademark using the website of the appropriate government agency. These websites are the official sites for the US Patent and Trademark Office and the Intellectual Property Office of the UK.

You can use a search utility on these websites to conduct a trademark search quickly and easily. These utilities provide basic search fields, as well as a number of options for limiting results and setting search conditions. For example, you can search only for trademarks that are still alive, as opposed to older trademarks no longer registered, and search for keywords or for trademarks owned by particular businesses.

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