February 26, 2015
Trademark rights arise out of use in commerce, and can provide protection for your name, brand, and reputation in the community provided, that the marks are continuously used in connection with your goods or services. While brands change over time, whether the result of re-branding or through mergers or other acquisitions, it is important to consider that abandoning a valuable trademark or logo may permit a third party to claim it for its own use, often at your expense.

Trademark rights can continue so long as a mark is used in commerce, and even short periods of non-use are allowed. However, there is a legal presumption in trademark law under the Lanham Act that non-use for a period of three consecutive years equates to a legal presumption of abandonment of trademark rights. Failure to maintain your trademark rights may open up opportunities for competitors to step in and claim those rights, as Macy’s recently found with a case set for trial next week.

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