Kinney & Lange attorneys are experienced in protecting brands and images for both individual and institutional clients. Kinney & Lange attorneys can proactively advise, manage, and guide entrepreneurs and existing businesses regarding trademark and unfair competition law, including:
Trademark Selection and Counseling
Your brand is key to communicating who you are, so you should not overlook the benefit of selecting, refining, and maintaining a marketplace identity in the eyes of your potential and repeat customers. At the same time, that identity should be one that is readily protectable and free of infringement of third-party rights. Performing an early analysis for proposed marks (trademarks and servicemarks) before making a final selection can help avoid unnecessary effort and expense that can arise when conflicts or a lack of protection force downstream re-branding. Kinney & Lange trademark attorneys are strategic advisors who can help clients evaluate potential marks and trade dress to prepare them for rapid protection and reduce the likelihood of meaningful conflicts. As part of that evaluation, we can perform a search for potentially conflicting marks, and advise on the impact that third-party marks will have on registration and use of your own marks.
Registration and Renewals
Once a brand is selected, and the marks associated with it, Kinney & Lange guides clients through the steps of establishing the identity of the company and products. We also offer assistance and representation in federally registering marks with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO), and coordinate protection abroad, such as via the Madrid Protocol. We also can assist with state registration of a mark.
Sometimes, despite initial efforts, registration of a mark is initially refused, and we can offer clients pragmatic and strategic guidance on how to proceed. Kinney & Lange’s battle-tested attorneys understand the challenges associated with trademark registrations, and bring their experience in trademark litigation to bear as well.
A mark may be in use for decades, and associated trademark registrations will require renewal to be maintained. We work with clients to help maintain rights in their marks as long as they are available.
Liaison with Foreign Counsel
Many of Kinney & Lange’s clients have international interests that require counsel and portfolio management with foreign IP attorneys. We have built trusted relationships with foreign counsel in dozens of countries. We also have experience with Madrid Protocol registrations, for coordinated trademark registrations around the globe. Our attorneys understand how to manage trademark portfolios to account for differences in national laws.
Kinney & Lange also provides U.S. trademark services to numerous clients, attorneys, and agents based outside the United States.
For more information, see our International Intellectual Property Protection page.
Kinney & Lange attorneys can assist in negotiating, structuring and drafting trademark licensing agreements. Our licensing services include securing the assignment of trademark rights as part of sales, mergers and acquisitions. For more information, see our Licensing page.
Trademark Disputes and Litigation
In competitive marketplaces, disputes over branding and marks are inevitable. These disputes can take the form of trademark infringement, unfair competition, and advertising issues stemming from misrepresentations. Kinney & Lange attorneys counsel and represent clients both initiating and defending infringement, unfair competition, and related actions, working both in the courtroom and in settlement negotiations. For more information on our litigation services, please see our Litigation page.
Conflicting trademark registrations and applications can also arise. Kinney & Lange attorneys are experienced in trademark opposition and cancellation proceedings before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) at the USPTO. We can help you understand your rights, monitor potential infringers, and give you practical advice about how to challenge third-party registrations, or defend your own registration against attack.
Domain Name Registration, Searches, and Dispute Resolution
Your digital presence is just as important to your brand identity as those in physical space. Managing use of your marks in domains and social media can help strengthen your brand and the associated marks. But as top-level domains continue to expand, defending your brand against cybersquatters is more daunting than ever. Kinney & Lange attorneys have represented clients in a number of formal and informal domain disputes, and are ready to help you devise strategies to protect our brand and avoid customer confusion in the marketplace. We can devise strategies to identify and pursue infringers, and, when possible, seek transfer of domain names to you. We are ready to assist with arbitration proceedings under the Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy (UDRP) and Uniform Rapid Suspension System (URS), and associated litigation.