Practice Lead Contact: Steve Hill
HKW practices in all areas of trademark and domain name law, including domestic and foreign trademark prosecution, trademark clearance, licensing, enforcement of trademark and domain name rights, and litigation. In the last several years, one of HKW’s partners was twice-appointed a special master in cases alleging trademark infringement pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. HKW also recently obtained a million-dollar trademark verdict on behalf of long-time trademark client Hooters of America against a web counterfeiter. Unlike other firms, HKW takes an entrepreneurial approach to many trademark projects in order to ensure excellent service within the allocated budget. Our clients rely upon us to handle their trademark prosecution matters before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) in matters ranging from basic applications to complex issues such as appeals to the PTO’s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board following an examining attorney’s refusal to register a mark.
Initial Trademark Search
At the client’s request, HKW will do preliminary searches of the PTO database of registered trademarks and service marks to provide a preliminary assessment of the chances for registration. HKW lawyers have performed this kind of basic searching and related counseling for Fortune 500 companies, for some of the largest, most successful private brands in the U.S., and for mid- and small-sized companies looking to create a national brand.
Advanced Trademark Search
At the client’s request, HKW will refer a matter to a national or international search firm for a detailed trademark search and analysis. The third party searches range from $500 up to in some cases over a thousand dollars per search, depending upon the complexity of the mark, and the comprehensiveness of the databases to be searched. HKW lawyers have experience in interpreting these search results, fielding client questions, and helping to decide whether the mark, if applied for, would likely be granted a federal or state registration.
Once a client has made a decision to prosecute a trademark, HKW utilizes an alternative to the traditional hourly-based model, by negotiating a one-time flat fee payment for preparing, filing and prosecuting an application. This fee is inclusive of all initial application filing and mailing fees required by the PTO, which are all the fees likely to be encountered by the registrant – except in the cases of necessary extension fees, and fees associated with filing statements of use (applicable only in the case of “intent to use applications”) at the conclusion of a successful registration. Our clients tend to appreciate the budget-friendly nature of this pricing model.
When a client applies for a trademark, there is always a chance that a third party will file an opposition to the registration. These opposition proceedings are contested matters. Our clients look to our expertise in dealing with opposition matters inside the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Trademark and Trade Dress Dispute Resolution and Litigation
HKW lawyers have substantial experience representing plaintiffs and defendants in trademark and trade dress disputes. We have represented clients successfully in resolving these disputes in arbitrations, including ICANN domain name dispute arbitration, through private mediations using experienced trademark lawyers as mediators, through one-on-one negotiations with an adverse party’s counsel, and, where necessary, through the courts. We advise our clients to carefully consider all of these options because often the successful resolution of these disputes is critical to their business interests. We have been trusted to litigate such well-known trademarks as “HOOTERS” and “NAPA Auto Parts.” We have handled major trademark, trade dress and unfair competition cases through trial and appeal, including the oversight of trademark litigation in other countries.
HKW lawyers have substantial experience representing our clients’ interests abroad. We do this through a vast network of contacts that we maintain with skilled trademark firms in over one hundred countries. Currently, we oversee the registration and maintenance of our clients’ trademarks in over 100 foreign countries. From time-to-time, HKW’s clients have had trademark disputes in foreign countries. Where this has happened HKW has overseen and managed the dispute, working hand-in-hand with our associated foreign trademark counsel.
Click here for HKW representative trademark litigation.