The question, “how long does it take to get a trademark,” comes up quite often during our initial brand protection consultations. The short answer is; it depends. Perfect applications are rare. While we have filed applications that were registered in less than 7.5 months, the norm is closer to 9 months.
Each Examiner reviews an application subjectively, so it’s impossible to predict how they will scrutinize any individual application. Trademark law is a niche field and trademark applications are technical. An application could have any number of minor defects that are easily curable, such as:
- an insufficient specimen;
- insufficient identification of the goods/services; and/or
- filing an application in the wrong class.
Alternatively, an application filed by an inexperienced individual could be flawed in a way that would force the individual to abandon their application altogether.
U.S. citizens do not need to work with a trademark lawyer to apply for a trademark. However, it is highly recommended to do so. Additionally, a USPTO regulation from August 2019 requires foreign applicants to work with a U.S. licensed attorney. Trademark law is always changing. Using a lawyer who’s up-to-date on the latest trends and guidelines could help you save time and money.