Colorado allows trademark registration under state law, found at CRS 7-70-101. Registration under Colorado law is easier, faster and less expensive than federal trademark registration.
A trademark is any word, name, slogan, symbol, device or any combination thereof, including packaging, configuration of goods, or other trade dress, adopted and used by a person to identify goods made or sold or services rendered, and to distinguish them from goods made or sold or services rendered by others.
State trademark registration is used to help protect a trademark in the geographic area where it is used. It may be adequate for a small business with customers in a limited territory.
Federal trademark registration, indicated with the symbol ®, provides federal protection and more protection than state registration. But, federal registration can be a lengthy, expensive process. Filing a Colorado trademark registration does not protect it against a federal trademark. State registration does not authorize the use of the federal registration symbol ®.
Trademark rights are principally established under common law by first use in a given type of business, and actual and continuous use of the mark. Trademark registration under federal or state law is not required but has advantages.
Standard Character or Special Form Trademark
A Colorado registration allows for a standard character trademark and a special form trademark. A standard character trademark is expressed in ordinary English letters, Roman and Arabic numbers, or punctuation, without any stylization. A special form trademark includes logos, pictures, design elements, color, or style of lettering.
The registrant must state a good faith belief that the submitted trademark does not cause trademark infringement on any other trademark rights.
Colorado registrations are effective for 5 years and may be renewed before expiration in successive 5-year terms. Prior to May 29, 2007, Colorado trademarks were effective and renewed for 10 years.
To file a Colorado registration, submit a Statement of Registration of Trademark electronically, with the required attachments and filing fee. The electronic form is found on the Colorado Secretary of State (SOS) website at http://www.sos.state.co.us/biz/FileDocTrademark.do The current filing fee is $30.
A class code is required, indicating the type of goods and services offered by the business. The class codes are found on the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) website.
Disclaimer: This information is not legal advice. Contact a trademark attorney for legal advice. The Colorado SOS and USPTO websites have useful information.
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