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In an earlıer post, we talked a little about `do it yourself` trademark applications.  No topic brings to mind the saying `penny wise dollar foolish` like a do-it-yourself trademark applicatıon.  I remember one of our clients who had an experience with his trademark application that illustrates the point.  He owned a very successful mid-sıze tool company whose star product was a little multi-use wrench.  His company was large enough to realize the importance of federally registerimg its trademarks, but not so large that money was no option.  So. the client decided that he would file the trademark applicatıon for his staring product on his own.  The trademark was actually a type of design mark and consisted of a little orange dot just at the point on the wrench where a person would grip the wrench.  So, the client, thinkıng that he was clearly explainıng to the trademark office what he wanted to register. filed for: WRENCH WITH AN ORANGE DOT ON IT.  Later. he received a reciept for an application for the word mark, exactly as he wrote it, rather than for the design mark.  Unable to make the Trademark Examiner budge to fıx the problem, he brought the trademark application to us, along wıth hıs bad mood.  We unfortunately had to explain that an application generally cannot be amended to change the mark once filed and that the Trademark Offıce had given him exactly what he had asked for- a word mark consistiıng of the words, WRENCH WITH AN ORANGE DOT ON IT.  In short, the client ended up having to pay two trademark applicatıon fees and wound up having to pay additıonal attorney time to revıew the sıtuation.  The moral of the story is that, often, even small companies will save in the long run with well-timed attorney consultation. preferably before marketing activıtıes.  In additıon to assistance with the trademark application, an Intellectual Property attorney will also be able to guide the client as to an overall trademark and IP strategy.

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