What’s The Difference Between A Trade Mark And A Service Mark

A common question that comes up when trying to protect a brand name or logo relates to the difference between trademarks and service marks.  To what extent is there a difference, and what are the rules for filing each?   The short answer is that there is really no difference between a trade mark application and a service mark application when it comes to filing with the Patent and Trademark Office.

Simply put, service marks protect trade names, logos and other identifiers that are associated with services while trade marks protect identifiers related to goods (tangible products).  The terms “trademark” and “mark” are often used to refer to both trade marks and service marks.   The important thing to remember is to correctly identify the type of goods and/or services that will be traded under the mark in the application.

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