Updated: Aug 6
Have you ever imagined what your worse case trademark scenario would be?
Maybe you've heard of horrors stories; or perhaps you have had the actual misfortune of experiencing it yourself: the shock, gut-punch, tangy realization that all your hard work, may have been in vain. Hopefully, this is just an over-dramatization; and that you haven't actually had to endure this existential hell-storm.
But for my client--this was all too real.
So real, that I earmarked it,
"THE TRADEMARK FROM HELL!!!"
So without going into too much detail (after all, I'm not writing a novel here), I'll give you the nuts and bolts of what went down. One day, not much different than today, I received a phone call from a client, lets call her, "Boudoir;" and Boudoir, lets say, was a little out of sorts. Frantic and talking-in-tongues, she tells me about a letter she received.
Apparently, Boudoir had received a letter from another photographer demanding that Boudoir, stop using Boudoir's business name. And that, if and when Boudoir didn't comply, she, being the angry photographer, would bring swift legal action. Wow.
Can you imagine?--
In short, Boudoir was having a Trademark NIGHTMARE, that required prompt legal action.
Basically, what happened, is that Boudoir and the photographer had the SAME business name. Not figuratively, but literally. To make matters worse--if that's even possible, they lived and did business fifteen miles (15) from each other. Needless to say, Boudoir was on the brink of tears, and who could blame her? She'd built a successful business, spent thousands of dollars in branding herself, and was on the cusp of expanding, before the PROVERBIAL shit hit the fan.
So what happened next?--
After doing some research I learned that although the photographer had registered her business in California, before Boudoir, she had not really done anything else (building her brand, advertising...); more importantly, she had not trademarked the name with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
You could imagine how thrilled I was upon learning this. Like a sugar-deprived kid in a candy shop, I called Boudoir with the serendipitous news; excitedly fumbling every other word in the process. Fast-forward, Boudoir trademarked her business, and never again, has to worry about finding her self upstream, without a paddle.
Look--this was a close one, but it didn't have to be. If you are thinking about starting a business, or have started a business, or have been doing business for sometime, I urge you....no I beg you, don't put it off any longer. What happened to Boudoir was an ABSOLUTE BEST CASE SCENARIO. Most of the time, people aren't that lucky.
The ugly truth is, something like this can be the STRAW THAT BREAKS THE CAMELS BACK.
Don't be one of the statistics. Get your business Trademarked!! You can thank me later!!! : ))