Who can obtain a trademark?

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Updated: 4/13/2007 6:36 pm
Anyone marketing a product automatically receives a trademark simply by selling the product under that name. If you want to, you can alert the public to the fact that the trademark is yours by adding the capital letters T-M after the name. However, such a common law trademark only offers limited protection. If another company puts out a similar product with the same name, it could take a lengthy lawsuit to establish the true owner. Federal registration of your trademark is a far safer way of protecting it. The owner of the mark must submit the application for registration, whether that's an individual, a corporation, or a partnership. An attorney representing the owner may also perform the actual filing. Applicants not residing in the U-S must either designate a representative residing in this country or an attorney practicing here to handle all correspondence with the trademark office.
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