The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) functions like a court for trademark matters at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). It is authorized to determine a party's right to register a trademark with the federal government. It is not authorized to determine whether the applicant has the right to use a trademark, just whether it can be registered. It is not authorized to determine questions of trademark infringement or unfair competition or to award monetary damages or attorney's fees. For anything other than determining the right of federal registration, parties must file a case in a federal or state court. There are three main types of proceedings: Appeals, Oppositions, and Cancellations.
During the trademark application process, an examining attorney may refuse to register a mark for various legal reasons. For example, the mark's registration may be refused because it merely describes goods and services as listed in the application or is likely to cause confusion with a registered mark.
If the USPTO provides a "final" refusal and the applicant disagrees with that decision, the applicant may appeal to the TTAB who then decides whether the mark may be registered.
The determination is made by a three-judge panel that independently reviews the application file, including all communications between the applicant and the USPTO, and issues a written decision.
Ms. Harper has conducted hundreds of trademark and trade dress surveys. She is an expert in knowing the differences between surveys for TTAB and those in Federal District Courts and State Courts.
Ms. Harper ensures that she selects the correct universe and the most appropriate methodology. She uses state-of-the art survey tools, hosting platforms, and works with only the best-in-class sample companies.