A declaration of excusable nonuse is a sworn statement in which you, the owner of a trademark, explain to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) why your mark is not currently in commercial use. This statement should disclose that the nonuse of your mark does not necessarily mean you wish to abandon your ownership over it. Continue reading to learn whether you need to file a declaration of excusable nonuse and how an experienced Missouri trademark attorney at FortmanSpann, LLC can walk you through this application.
Do I need to file a declaration of excusable nonuse for my trademark?
There may be a period in which you do not use your mark in commerce for some or all of your goods and services. Rest assured, there are special circumstances in which the USPTO may excuse the nonuse of your mark. More specifically, the following are valid reasons:
- You are willing and able to continue the use of your mark in commerce, but there is a trade embargo beyond your control.
- You temporarily did not use your mark due to the sale of your business.
- You temporarily did not use your mark due to an interruption in retooling a plant or equipment, which is essential to the production of your goods.
- You temporarily did not use your mark due to a product type that cannot be produced quickly or in large numbers, but you still have orders on hand.
- You temporarily did not use your mark due to a serious illness, and your business operation cannot continue without your presence.
So if any of the aforementioned scenarios relate to you, then you may proceed forward with filing a declaration.
What does this declaration consist of?
It is critical that you thoroughly fill out your declaration of excusable nonuse before sending it off to the USPTO. That is, along with your reason for temporary nonuse, you must include the following details:
- Your full name and residential address.
- The registration number of the trademark in question.
- The goods and services that are tied to this trademark.
- Your signature and the date.
- The required filing fee (i.e., $525 per class of goods or services).
Keep in mind, you must submit this declaration at the sixth-year mark from the date on which you originally registered your mark; or, at a succeeding 10-year mark from the date on which you registered your mark. While there may be a six-month grace period, you do not want to wait too long to file. This is because if you miss this deadline, the USPTO may just cancel the registration of your mark altogether.
With all things considered, you must be proactive in your pursuit of this declaration. This starts with retaining the services of a skilled Missouri trademark attorney. Call FortmanSpann, LLC today.