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What is an “opposition”?

The United States Patent and Trademark Office requires, as one of the steps within the trademark registration process, that a potential trademark be published in the Official Gazette for a thirty day period. An examiner assigned to a particular trademark registration will first complete all preliminary steps for allowing a trademark application, therein approving the trademark for publication within the Official Gazette. As an open source, the Official Gazette allows any subscribing third party to view published marks for a period of thirty days, within which the third party further has the right to file an opposition against any published marks. The filing of an opposition against a potential mark typically involves an owner of a separate registered mark opposing the potential mark on grounds that the potential mark may be confusingly similar. Once opposed, the owner of the potential mark is given a “notice of opposition”, which allots a forty day window for an answer to be filed in response. If an answer is filed, the matter will be settled by the Trademark Trial and Appeals Board. If no answer is filed, the application of the potential trademark is dismissed outright.

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For more information on intellectual property, please visit Patent, Trademark, Copyright Information.

The content of this article is not intended to be, and does not constitute, legal advice and does not create attorney-client privilege. Consult the attorney of your choice before embarking on any legal matter or any document preparation/filing.

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Dr. Thomas R. (Terry) Williamson III is a Patent Attorney practicing in Atlanta, Georgia.

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Williamson Intellectual Property Law, LLC
1870 The Exchange, Suite 100
Atlanta, GA 30339
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Williamson Intellectual Property Law, LLC
1870 The Exchange, Suite 100 - Atlanta, Georgia 30339