Can I use a trademark if it has been cancelled, abandoned or expunged?

It depends.

Even if a trademark is expunged, it doesn’t mean it’s no longer in use. If the trademark in question is still used by the owner, then he/she may still have common law rights. That means that when you file your trademark application, once it’s published for opposition purposes, the owner of the expunged registration may oppose registration of your mark on the ground of prior use. And he may win!

If you use your trademark without filing for a trademark, then it’s still possible for the owner of the expunged trademark to sue you, again on the grounds of prior use.

If the expunged mark is no longer in use, then you should be safely provided there are no other confusingly similar marks.

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By |2018-01-15T14:57:05+00:00August 20th, 2017||Comments Off on Can I use a trademark if it has been cancelled, abandoned or expunged?

About the Author:

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Anita Mar
CEO and Registered Trademark Agent at Trademark Angel Inc.

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