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Crucial Things To Remember About Your Trademark Application

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) conducts an intensive examination of every trademark application submitted by individuals, groups and organizations. Keep in mind that registering your trademark, which can be an image, words or sound, can be a challenging task because of the strict requirements and process, especially if you’re taking it on your own.

We suggest that you hire an experienced trademark agent or attorney to handle the dirty work, so to speak. But it also pays to know the basics of the initial application process since it’s your trademark and the rights and responsibilities that come with it rests squarely on your shoulders.


Select Your Mark Properly

If you want to start the trademark registration process on the right foot, you have to select your mark properly. You have to choose it with extreme care since not every mark can be registered with the USPTO and not every mark can also be legally protected. In case of the latter, a mark may be unacceptable as a basis for a legal claim by its owner who wants to prevent others from using a similar mark on related products and/or services.


You don’t want to make the rookie mistake of submitting an initial application for your trademark only to find out that it cannot be registered. Aside from checking that, indeed, it can be registered, you have to determine the ease and effectiveness of protecting it based on its strength.


You have to take note, too, that USPTO isn’t responsible for the enforcement of your trademark – its primary function is to register trademarks and patents. You, the trademark owner, have the primary and exclusive responsibility for its enforcement including when others are using it to their commercial advantage.


You should also take note of the acceptable format of marks before submission to the USPTO. You must also precisely identify your products and/or services that the mark will be applied on.


Search the Database

Before you file a trademark application, you should also search the USPTO database for similar marks. Your main goal: To determine whether another individual or organization has already claimed trademark rights similar to your mark and used them on related products and/or services through a federal registration.


A clearance search will save costs on trademark registration, too, since the USPTO generally doesn’t grant refunds. Thus, even if your initial application isn’t approved for one reason or another, a refund check won’t be in your mail.


You must also know that any and all personal information submitted to the USPTO at any point in the application and registration process becomes public record. Your full name, phone number and e-mail address, and street address will be part of the public database, which may or may not be a cause for concern on your part.


For details of the trademark registration, please contact us for free consulation.


CtR Intellectual Property Co.

Hong Kong Patent Application Grant Authorised Patent Agent

Offering Professional Patent and Trademark Application & Related Services

Mistakes Derailing Your Trademark Application

Yes, you may have a unique trademark – or at least, you think you have it. But before making brash decisions, you should take a step back and remember that the Patent and Trademark Office doesn’t mess around when it comes to the registration process. You may think that it’s easy enough, especially after reading countless articles on the subject matter, but it isn’t because of the strict filing requirements and the bureaucratic procedures.

Arguably, the worst mistakes that you can do before filing a trademark application are these two things.


Not Hiring An Experienced Trademark Agent or Attorney

Keep in mind that the trademark application process is a legal proceeding protected by the trademark laws. As such, individuals, groups and organizations can be subjected to penalties including fines, surcharges and suspensions in case of violations of trademark laws.


As such, it’s of crucial importance to hire an experienced agent or attorney with a valid license to practice trademark law. Better yet, hire an experienced trademark agent or attorney with a proven track record of success in the field, if you want to increase your chance of success in getting your trademark registered.


Of course, you can file the application on your own but there are many pitfalls to such a do-it-yourself approach. You may well find that the documentary requirements can be voluminous and stringent while the process can be bureaucratic. You won’t likely have the right knowledge and skills to deal with the legal process and, thus, make a mess of it.  Your trademark application can be delayed and its registration jeopardized.


Not Checking That Your Mark Can Be Registered

Your trademark application must be in compliance with many legal requirements before it can be approved for registration. You don’t just fill in the forms, whether you’re filing online or in paper, even if you’re in a hurry to claim the mark (i.e., competitors are using a similar one), lest you find yourself in a bind.


In this regard, you have to ask yourself several questions including:

  • Can your mark actually be registered under the rules and regulations?
  • Can you identify the good and/or services covered by your mark?
  • Can you determine the filing basis for your initial application?


Your trademark agent or attorney can answer these questions and provide guidance on several related matters.  With your trademark registered, you have the assurance that your brand names including the slogans and logos used on your products and/or services will be protected from unauthorized use by other entities.


For details of the trademark registration, please contact us for free consulation.


CtR Intellectual Property Co.

Hong Kong Patent Application Grant Authorised Patent Agent

Offering Professional Patent and Trademark Application & Related Services

高通、Apple 在美專利戰結果

高通與 Apple 之間在美國的兩宗專利戰都開始有判決,然而結果各異。首先的是因為 Apple 被確定侵害高通的專利技術,所以美國貿易法官 MaryJoan McNamara 建議禁售部分舊有 iPhone 型號。不過因為是無約束力的決議,而且也要再通過國際貿易委員會(ITC)的審議才能決定;但 ITC 同日又拒絕了高通就另一宗專利案而尋求禁止 iPhone 進口美國的要求。 在仍然未有最終判決的一宗官司中,是針對 iPhone 7 和 iPhone 7 Plus 是否用了侵害高通在提升數據傳輸速度和品質的專利技術。雖然法官建議禁售這兩款產品,但其他同樣有起用相關技術的 iPhone 型號則未知會否同樣受影響。另一方面,高通就著 Apple 產品侵害他們在省電技術的專利權而尋求禁止進口 iPhone 的要求,ITC 表示拒絕。因為官方認為這決定需要留待 7 月,即全體委員審查完成後才能作出。 早前 Apple 在德國和中國大陸已經先後被判侵害高通專利,分別在兩地需要停售相關型號。使得 Apple 需要在德國重新上架搭載高通晶片的舊型號 iPhone,以及在中國大陸推出軟體更新來應對。


The Types Of United States Patents Explained Briefly

According to the United States patent law, inventors can secure and protect their rights to their works by applying for a patent. The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) classifies patents into four different types and an inventor can apply for one or two patents, such as a utility patent and provisional patent.

Utility Patent

When people think of a patent, it’s most likely that they are referring to or thinking of a utility patent. Keep in mind that a utility patent is a lengthy technical document with details about the use of a new machine, system, or process. The document can contain descriptions, drawings and images of the invention, a must for its registration.


Congress defines the kinds of inventions covered by utility patents. But with Internet-delivered software, the Internet of Things, and genetic engineering, among other emerging technologies, the definition is being challenged.


Provisional Patent

Under the patent law, an inventor can file a less formal document as proof that he was in possession of the invention and he had sufficient knowledge of how to make it work (i.e., the utility requirement). This is known as a provisional patent, which goes hand in hand with a utility patent.


Let’s say that you filed a provisional patent for your invention. When it’s on file, your patent is considered as pending and you have the applicable property rights to your invention. You should file a formal utility patent within one year from filing the provisional patent.


Design Patent

The design patent doesn’t need to meet the utility requirement since it protects decorative design on a utilitarian item. The typical design patent document consists almost entirely of drawings or pictures with a few words and, thus, these are notoriously difficult to search on the USPTO database.


This can be applied for a wide range of ideas and items. These include the design for shoes, the shape of a designer bottle, and even user interfaces.


Plant Patent

A plant patent is obviously designed to protect new types of plants that have been produced through non-sexual methods, such as cuttings. Emphasis must be made that it generally covers conventional horticulture and not genetically modified organisms (GMOs).


You don’t have to be limited to filing a single patent on an invention. You can actually file two patents for a single item!


You may file a provisional patent on your invention so you have one year to decide when and how to file its related utility patent.  In doing so, you’re expanding patent protection and mitigating your risk of another person claiming the same or similar invention.


Regardless of the type of patent you chose, your main goal is to protect your invention from infringement by others. You will then have a higher chance of getting a good return on your investment once you start profiting from your invention.


For details of the patent application, please contact us for free consulation.



CtR Intellectual Property Co.

Hong Kong Patent Application Grant Authorised Patent Agent

Offering Professional Patent and Trademark Application & Related Services


根據(WIPO)於2019年1月底發布研究報告WIPO Technology Trends 2019 Artificial Intelligence結果顯示,近年來隨著人工智慧超越理論範疇進入全球市場,可以從人工智慧的專利發明大量申請湧現而知,其中,美國的IBM和微軟公司為其中佼佼者. AI 專利申請 計算機視覺包括圖像識別技術,是實現汽車自動駕駛的關鍵技術,也是最常見的AI應用,所有AI相關專利中有49%涉及該技術。 用於機器人的AI專利申請從2013年的622件增長至2016年的2,272件,總體提高265%,年均增長率55%。 控制方法技術管理機器臂等設備的行為,相關專利申請從2013年的193件增加至2016年的698件,提高262%,年均增長率達到55%。 資料來源: WIPO

Registering Your Trademark Is A Must

In a world obsessed with brands, both on the part of the producers and the consumers, even small businesses have to register trademark! The cost of not doing so can jeopardize the business, as illustrated by the case of Drop Anchor Brewing and Anchor Brewing Co.


A Good Example

Anchor Brewing Co., a large California-based brewery, sent Drop Anchor Brewing, a small Washington State-based craft brewery, a cease and desist letter asking it to stop using the word “Anchor” in its name. The former’s allegation was that it has federal trademark registration over the word and, thus, it has exclusive use of it in the beer industry. The result: Drop Anchor Brewing changed its name as well as everything else on its logo, signs, labels, taps, and even shirts to avoid a costly lawsuit – but the cost of these changes still cost it an arm and a leg.

This case illustrates the benefits of getting your trademark registered on one hand and the hazards of not doing so on the other hand.


A Host of Reasons to Register ASAP  

Don’t think that Drop Anchor Brewing’s case won’t happen to you for whatever reason, such as you’re just a small company with a novel idea. You will be surprised at the intense competition for ideas, goods and services in the market so vigilance is the key.

Why register your brand or mark ASAP, if you haven’t done so yet? Here are four reasons to think about.


  • Setting your brand for success

When you register your brand and its associated images as a trademark, you’re setting it up for success because a brand equals an identity. Your brand identity distinguishes your business and its products and/or services from the rest of the competition – and with a brand-obsessed society, such distinction is crucial to your success.


  • Expanding your business

While you can have exclusive right to use your business name, you can only do so within the state where it’s registered, not on the federal level. Furthermore, your business may have common law trademark protection but it only applies to the geographic area where it’s been used.


When you decide to expand your business operations, particularly opening out-of-state branches, you may run into issues with competitors, consumers and government regulatory agencies. Your target customers, for example, may confuse your brand and business with other businesses with similar names or images. Your competitor with a federal trademark may also file a lawsuit, limit your operations, and/or force a name change, all of which will be costlier than if you registered your trademark at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in the first place.

The bottom line: A trademark registration at the USPTO provides you and your business national exclusive rights over your brand and its related images. This alone comes with a wide range of benefits so act as soon as you can.

For details of the trademark registration, please contact us for free consulation.


CtR Intellectual Property Co.

Hong Kong Patent Application Grant Authorised Patent Agent

Offering Professional Patent,

Trademark Registration & Related Services


宏達電宣布旗下 HTC EXODUS 將與全球第一款加密技術相容的瀏覽器 Opera 合作;HTC EXODUS 1 並開放以一般法定貨幣購買,預計於 3 月 1 日起在台開賣,團隊針對特定合作夥伴釋出的 Zion 金鑰管理 API,加強守護使用者資料。Opera 為全球第一款加密技術相容的瀏覽器,則率先採用 Zion 金鑰管理 API;這意味著所有的 Opera 用戶都能透過 HTC EXODUS 1,確保自身加密資產享有更高安全保障,放心於各種去中心化應用、交易、登入,善用便捷服務。 (來源:江明晏, 宏達電)

What Are The Types Of IP Protection right for you?

Patents, copyrights and trademarks are different from each other and each one serves a different purpose. All three, nonetheless, are forms of intellectual property (IP) protection that every individual with an invention, an idea, or a trademark should seriously consider.

Patents Are For Inventions

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issues patents, the grant of property rights to an inventor. In general, a new patent has a term of 20 years from the date when its application for a patent was filed in the United States. In special cases, however, the term starts from the date an earlier related application was filed but the maintenance fees must be updated. Under certain circumstances, the patent holder can apply for patent term adjustments or extensions.


The patents filed with the USPTO are only effective within the United States as well as to its possessions and territories. Many, if not most, inventors then apply patents for their inventions in an international body to protect their inventions in certain jurisdictions.


The property rights conferred by a patent include “the right to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling” the item covered in the United States, as well as from “importing” it into the United States. Keep in mind that what’s actually granted isn’t the right to make, use, sell, offer for sale, or import the item but the right to exclude others from doing so.


Trademarks Are for Words and Others

A trademark refers to a name, word, symbol or device used in trading products to indicate their source and to distinguish them from others. A servicemark is similar to a trademark but it’s used to distinguish the origin or source of a service, not a product. In most cases, a servicemark can also be called a trademark for convenience purposes.


Trademark rights can be used in preventing other individuals and organizations from the use of confusingly similar-looking or similar-sounding marks. But these aren’t intended to prevent others from manufacturing, selling and offering to sell the same products and/or services. For example, McDonald’s has a trademark so it has exclusive use to the brand and its related images but it doesn’t have the right to prevent KFC, Wendy’s and Five Guys to sell burgers, fries and shakes.


Copyrights Are for Original Works of Authorship

Copyrights are granted to authors or creators of “original works of authorship” that include but aren’t limited to literary, intellectual, musical, dramatic, and artistic works, both unpublished and published. Under the 1976 Copyright Act, the copyright owner has the exclusive right to his or her work, which can include reproduction of the copyrighted work, distribution of its copies, performance of the work in a public venue, preparation of derivative works, and display of the work publicly.


Which IP protection is right for you?

For details of the patent application or trademark registration, please contact us for free consultation.



CtR Intellectual Property Co.

Hong Kong Patent Application Grant Authorised Patent Agent

Offering Professional Patent and

Trademark Application & Related Services



中國商家包辦德國…金鼻子剽竊獎(Plagiarius Award)前十名。不過,翻查2017年全球的國際專利(PCT)申請數據,排第一的美國申請了逾5萬件國際專利,而中國則以4.8萬件申請數超越日本,位列第二;被美國指控剽竊知識產權的華為,更成為全球提交最多專利申請的企業。中國山寨與創新「兩強」並存的局面,似乎十分矛盾。 中國高科技發明專利少之又少,絕大多數是外觀、技術含量不高的專利,專利的質量需大幅提高,「像華為這類重視專利申請的企業在中國太少」;他指出,國企靠資源壟斷就能賺得盤滿缽滿,根本不需要創造發明,民營企業又因稅收負擔沉重,沒有能力做,導致「國企沒動力創新,民企有動力創新但沒有錢」 香港發明要重質不重量,不能指望神舟補貼。 資料來源: PCT


財政司司長陳茂波今日發表2019至20財政年度《政府財政預算案》,他表示「工欲善其事,必先利其器」,今年會撥 55 億發展數碼港第 5 期,擴展本港科研基建。另外向創新及科技基金注資 20 億元,推動再工業化計劃,資助廠商在港設智能生產線。 陳茂波去年向數碼港注資 2 億元,加強支援數碼港的租戶及初創企業。數碼港經過多年的發展,已建立了一個超過 1,200 間公司和初創企業的數碼科技生態系統,並培育了 500 多間初創企業。今年《財政預算案》將預留 55 億元用作發展數碼港第五期,以吸納更多具實力的科技公司和初創企業進駐,也為年輕人提供投身創科界的途徑。 而在今年《財政預算案》計劃向創新及科技基金注資二十億元推行再工業化資助計劃,以配對形式資助生產商在港設立智能生產線。這些發展實體高端生産的措施,有助改善經濟結構,減少對服務業的依賴。 資料來源 : 2019至20財政年度 政府財政預算案