As of August 3, 2019, the United States Patent and Trademark Office “USPTO” has added new laws pertaining to foreign domiciled trademark applicants, registrants, and parties. The rule states that any trademark filer that is domiciled abroad must appoint and be represented before the USPTO by an attorney who is licensed to practice law in the United States. This includes filings for the Trademark Electronic Application System Plus “TEAS” application form and all application-related and registration related TEAS submissions.
What is a Foreign-Domicile?
A foreign domiciled registrant, applicant or party that does not live in the United States or any of it territories, is considered a foreigner for the purposes of this new rule. An individual’s domicile is the place in which that person resides and where they intend to have their principle home. For business entities, the domicile is based on the location of its headquarters, or its principle place of business where the entity’s senior officers or executives ordinarily direct and control activities.
What if I Submitted My Application Before the New Rule Became Effective?
If you’ve filed your application with the USPTO before the effective date of August 3, 2019, and the submission is otherwise acceptable, then the submission will be accepted. However, if the USPTO issues an office action on or before August 3, 2019, you will then need to appoint an attorney to respond or otherwise correspond with the USPTO on your behalf.