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The Government Shutdown and Your Trademarks


         Since several clients have asked how the government shutdown may affect their trademarks, we here at TradeMark Express decided it’d be a good idea to provide all of our clients an update.

          First, good news! The USPTO “will remain open...[and will] operate as usual for approximately four weeks.” This means that all “11,789 employees will be excepted” until approximately starting the week of October 28th. This means that all of your trademark needs will be met from filing a new application to submitting renewal forms.

          However, should the reserve funds be exhausted before then the USPTO will shut down. If a shut down happens, regardless of when it occurs, “a very small staff would continue to work to accept new applications and maintain IT infrastructure.” But what does this mean for you?


            Even if the USPTO shuts down, new applications will be accepted. Given that it takes about 3-4 months to be assigned to an examining attorney there will be no noticeable delays for new applications as it’s not expected (or hoped!) that the government will be shut down for months. So, more good news! There is no need to delay your needed comprehensive research or application preparation!


          In regard to already filed applications including those with pending Office Actions or those needing renewal forms, the USPTO will essentially function on a holiday schedule. This means that “any action or fee that is due on a date falling on...a Federal considered timely if the action is received, or the fee paid, on the following day that is NOT...a Federal holiday.” Let’s say the USPTO shuts down and your Office Action is due the very next day. No need to worry! It won’t actually be due until the USPTO is open.

CAVEAT – While these are the provisions in place as of now, the USPTO representative I spoke to warned that nothing is “positive yet” and the office is in “wait and see” mode as the USPTO has never closed down before. Should anything change from what’s outlined above, TradeMark Express will send out another notice.



If you’re thinking about filing a new application or have a pending application that needs attention then don’t delay and contact TradeMark Express today


Jamal Owens said…
A big part of any business is the name that it is given. It's the first thing that people usually see and it makes them wonder what it's about. It's smart to make sure that your business has a name that no one else does.
Shannon Moore said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shannon Moore said…
Thanks for reading & for your comment Jamal! And, yes, you are absolutely correct. All business owners will want to ensure that their business name is legally available.
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Lovella said…
Hi Shannon, I'd like to know... I live in the UK and would like to to start an online clothing line based in the US through automated shopping site selling to US customers.

Do I apply for a trademark and copyright my designs from here in the UK or do I need to do that With the American Government?

I would kindly appreciate your advise.

Kind regards
Shannon Moore said…
Hi Lovella,

Thank you for taking the time to read & to comment!

Typically, you'll want to file in whatever countries you're actively doing business in, i.e. where your goods are sold. Of course, if you have eventual plans to sell within the UK you'll likely want to consider that as well.

I'm happy to go over further details with you if you'd like - 800.776.0530 or shannon at

Thanks again!

Anonymous said…
Hey very nice blog!! Man .. Beautiful .. Amazing .. I will bookmark your blog and take
the feeds also…

Trademark Expert - Alexandria
Robert Misner said…
I found your blog when I was looking for a different sort of information but I was very happy and glad to read through your blog. The information available here is great.

Trademark Expert - Alexandria
Shannon Moore said…
Thank you Robert! Thankfully, we've been so busy that I haven't had time to delve back into writing daily though I certainly hope to find a way to carve out the time. Any topic you'd like explored further?
Juneau Mitchell said…
I found your blog when I was looking for a different sort of information but I was very happy and glad to read through your blog. The information available here is great.

Trademark Expert - Alexandria

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