What do Marc Jacobs, Jay-Z, Beyoncé, Jennifer Lopez, and countless other celebs have in common? They obtained a registered trademark for their name. Yes, you can get a registered trademark for your legal name so long as your name meets the USPTO’s requirements.
But do I need to obtain a trademark for my personal name? Securing a registered trademark for your name may be an excellent way to protect yourself from people who want to profit from the good-will you’ve built around your name. It can also help if you are a victim of cybersquatting – someone using your name as their domain name.
The USPTO allows individuals to register their name as a trademark only if it is extensively used in commerce or serves as your brand name. Basically, you cannot get a trademark for your name by itself. However, if your name is linked to a business or a unique brand, and is widely recognized to consumers, then you can get a trademark. Not too hard to prove right.
Well, Beyoncé thought that it would be smooth sailing when it came to securing a trademark for her 8-year old daughter, Blue Ivy Carter. The famed star filed a trademark application for Blue’s name in January 2016 in various classes of goods and services. However, in May 2017 business owner Veronica Morales filed a notice of opposition with the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) challenging Beyoncé’s “Blue Ivy Carter” trademark.
Ms. Morales argues that she named her business “Blue Ivy Events” before the artist’s child was even born, and she had a registered trademark since 2012 for her event planning services. Therefore, Beyoncé should not be allowed to trademark “Blue Ivy Carter”. The opposition also claims that Beyoncé and Jay-Z have no intention of using the “Blue Ivy Carter” trademark in commerce, as they stated in their trademark application.
In hopes of obtaining the Blue Ivy trademark, Beyoncé and her team argued that Blue Ivy is a cultural icon”, “mini style star,” and has been celebrated for her fashion moments. Her life and activities are followed extensively by the media and the public; therefore, her name is distinctive enough to obtain trademark protection. Also, they claim that Ms. Morales’ small event planning business with just a “handful of employees” and a “small online presence” should not prevent the registration of Blue Ivy’s worldwide name.
It seems as though both parties are ready to rumble! Stay tuned to see how this turns out!
1. Complete a comprehensive trademark search to determine if your name is already a registered trademark.
2. Apply through the USPTO’s online application.
3. With your application, file a statement of consent for the trademark. This is a statement signed by you (or the person whose name you’re attempting to register) that gives the USPTO permission to issue a trademark for that name.
The Choice of a lawyer is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements. Past results do not serve as a guarantee of future results. The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. The receipt or viewing of this information does not create an attorney-client relationship.