There are several options available for you to register a trademark. Four main options include submitting the application on your own, registering through a traditional all-around lawyer, registering through a trademark attorney and utilising a dedicated service, such as Trama. Each of these options can be associated with its specific advantages and shortcomings.
Registering a trademark on your own
The option for registering a trademark on your own is open to all citizens of a given country. This means that while an individual (or a company) can register a trademark on their own domestically, a requirement of a local representation by a trademark attorney applies for international registration. For example, a UK citizen can file own trademark application with UKIPO but requires a local trademark attorney for US, EU and other applications.
While registering a trademark on your own is clearly the cheapest option as only official administrative fees need to be paid, this option also incurs the highest risk of refusal. On average, about 70-80% of applications filed by individuals on their own are successful. This is mainly due to the often limited experience, understanding of the process and suboptimal assessment of the trademark’s distinctiveness or selection of appropriate goods and services.
Registering a trademark through a traditional all-around lawyer
The limits of a geographical representation also apply to the second option in the form of relying on the help from a traditional all-around lawyer who can assist with filing domestic trademark applications.
Given a better understanding of the legal processes involved in intellectual property rights protection, a traditional all-around lawyer is typically better equipped to file a successful trademark application than an individual on their own. The downside of this option is however relatively high cost, typically charged on an hourly basis.
Registering a trademark through a trademark attorney
It is the high level of experience in the process of trademark registration that increases the chances of a successful application when filed by a trademark attorney. At the same time, it is this level of specialisation that also tends increase the service fees charged by the trademark attorneys exponentially.
Registering a trademark through a dedicated service (e.g. Trama)
Bringing the best of both sides, a dedicated service (such as Trama) offers a balance between quality and cost. Streamlined and in many cases automated processes allow these service providers to compete in price whilst maintaining the high quality of service provided, resulting in above average chances of a successful application.
Several of these dedicated services (e.g. Trama) also provide their clients with a possibility of international representation, with dedicated in-house trademark attorneys covering the clients’ needs of global protection.
The table below presents an overview of the respective advantages and shortcomings associated with each option for registering a trademark.
On your own
Ease & convenience