How do I file for a Trademark in Florida?
Applying for a trademark (or servicemark) in Florida only takes a few steps. The first step is to fill out a trademark application. The trademark application also provides you with an explanation of the application process in the event you need it. Generally, however, you fill out the application online, in the form of a PDF, and print it. Alternatively, you can fill it out by hand. Unfortunately, Florida’s system at this time does not provide for e-filing. Therefore, after your application is ready, you must mail your completed form with the applicable fee to the Florida Division of Corporations for processing.
You must make sure your trademark meets the appropriate definition, and you should also do a thorough search to clarify that your trademark is in fact new and unique. Florida trademarks may be less expensive and easier to apply for than a federal trademark. However, it is important to note that a Florida trademark, or any other state trademark, is supplanted by a federal trademark if one exists.
In Florida, the general rule for trademark rights is “First In Use, First In Right.” In other words, you must be the first to use the mark in commerce. Either by selling products (for goods) or providing services (for services) before you can register the trademark. Also, you must show evidence of the use or the service for the mark. For goods, evidence of use can be in the form of labels, decals, tags, wrappers, boxes, and containers. For services, providing business cards, brochures, flyers, and newspaper advertisements may be sufficient evidence.
How much is it to Trademark a name in Florida?
The cost of filing the application will depend on the amount of classes you request in the application. The fee to register a mark in Florida is $87.50 per class. Conveniently, the trademark application contains an attachment with a list of classes. Moreover, Florida § 495.111 is the statute that defines the classifications. To ensure an efficient processing of your trademark application, you must submit the completed application along with three specimens (in the manner mentioned above) and a check for the appropriate amount ($87.50 p/class) made payable to Florida Department of State. The processing of the application should take between two to five business days from the date of receipt. For more information concerning trademark registration visit the Florida Department of State Division of Corporations website at http://www.sunbiz.org/.