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What is a Trade Name?

A trade name is the name which a business trades under for commercial purposes, and can be federally protected just like a trademark. However, no registration is required to own the rights to a trade name. Rights may be granted to the first one who uses a trade name for commercial purposes. These rights are typically known as common law rights.

When you own the common law rights to a trade name, you will have exclusive protectable rights in your business's geographic area. However, if you want to ensure your legal rights to a particular trade name, you can register it with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). To register your trade name, you can submit your registration via the USPTO website.

Before registering your trade name, you should do a search for conflicting names. If there is a similar trade name which is already registered, your registration may be denied. When it comes to protecting your trade name it is critical that you take action and be proactive. Learn more about registering your trade name.

Charles Internicola
National Business and Franchise Lawyer