There are several benefits to hiring an attorney to register your trademark and there are several attorneys like myself that offer reasonable flat fees designed for small business budgets. Here are a few significant benefits to hiring an attorney to register your trademarks and a couple of significant risks of not hiring one:
Filing a trademark application with the USPTO starts an actual legal proceeding. Your application is going to be examined thoroughly by an experienced USPTO examining attorney. Having an attorney on your team preparing and filing your application, and corresponding with the USPTO examining attorney will help avoid costly missteps and errors during the application process.
Hiring an attorney to register your trademark has proven to be more effective than filing pro se. A study performed by two law professors in 2012 examined all trademark applications submitted from 1985-2010. The study found that during that 25 year period, applications filed by an attorney were successful 82% of the time, whereas applications filed pro se were successful just 60% of the time. Click here to review the entire study.
Low cost DIY trademark services have been sanctioned by the USPTO in the past, resulting in the cancellation of thousands of applications and the loss of millions of dollars in filing fees. The basis of these sanctions is that these services are engaging in the unauthorized practice of law. Most recently, the USPTO sanctioned two entities on January 25, 2022. These entities were operating under dozens of trade names, such as “Trademark Regal’ and “US Trademark Services”, and offered do-it-yourself trademark services for a fee. The USPTO sanctioned these entities for the unauthorized practice of law and cancelled approximately 5,500 applications filed through these entities. Small business owner not only had their applications cancelled, but they also lost all filing fees and likely any fee paid to these companies. A complete list of orders and sanctions issued by the USPTO since 2012 in reference to these unauthorized practice of law issues can be found here.
It is not lost on me that I am a little biased as to whether you should hire a trademark attorney because I am a trademark attorney. However, the evidence is clear that having the experience and knowledge of a trademark attorney on your team increases your chances of a successful registration. It will also eliminate the risk of having your application cancelled due to an unauthorized practice of law sanction. This will save you time and money in the long run as you work through the registration process. I offer flat rate fees designed for small business budgets in an effort to be accessible to small businesses and entrepreneurs that may not have the resources of a large corporation; and I do so so that small businesses have a reasonable, and legal, alternative to the DIY trademark services mentioned in this post.
Please feel free contact me if you have any questions about this post or want to get started on registering your trademarks.