Although Trademarkelite.com offers unlimited
free trademark search
, you may need a Comprehensive Trademark Search. A
Comprehensive Trademark Search
looks at multiple public and private databases of company names, domain names, state trademarks, press releases, business publications, among others. This type of search identifies trademarks that may not be identical, but may block your efforts at registration for other reasons.
A Comprehensive Search can show you if there are other registered marks that, while not identical, are “confusingly similar” and therefore likely to result in marketplace confusion. “Confusingly similar” trademarks will cause your application to be refused.
A Comprehensive Search can also show you if someone has trademark rights in a name similar to yours even though they have not applied for federal registration. The United States is a “first to use” country. Someone who started using a trademark before you, even if they did not federally register the name, has rights that will cancel out your rights to that name, of any “confusingly similar” name.
The only way to uncover these unregistered marks is a Comprehensive Trademark Search.
Unregistered trademarks create tremendous silent risk for new applicants. Even after you successfully register your desired trademark, the owner of the unregistered trademark can petition to cancel your registration. To succeed, they only have to prove they sold products under the name before you did.
In a worst case scenario, you could even end up being liable for infringement damages of up to triple the profits you made during the years you used the trademark while knowing about the other brand owner.