The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) divides trademarks into 45 classes. Each class represents a specific category of products, goods, or services.
This article will cover class 8 trademark products. This category includes a variety of hand operated tools and implements.
Registering a Class 8 Trademark
First of all, it’s important to register all intellectual properties associated with your new business as trademarks. You can register any distinctive name, slogan, symbol, service, or product as a trademark.
Trademarks legally prevent other businesses from imitating your brand. However, trademarks only apply to intellectual properties in the same class. Therefore, multiple companies with the same name can exist, but only so long as the trademarks aren’t registered under the same class.
You’ll be asked to list which class your trademark belongs to when you submit your trademark application. You can list any classes to which your good, product or service belongs.
What is a Class 8 Trademark?
By registering a class 8 trademark, you are stating that your intellectual property relates to goods that will be used by consumers, professionals, and businesses.
These guidelines are intentionally broad, so here is a list of all goods covered by class 8:
- Animal shearing implements, cattle shearers, hair clippers for animals
- Hygienic and beauty implements for humans and animals, eyelash curlers, ear piercing apparatus, apparatus for tattooing
- Hair styling appliances, hair curling iron, flat iron, hair crimping iron
- Hair cutting and removal appliances, beard clippers, razor blades, shaving cases
- Manicure and pedicure tools, tweezers, nail buffers
- Food preparation implements, cheese slicers, egg slicers, meat choppers, forks, ladles, nutcrackers, sugar tongs, vegetable knives, can openers
- Hand operated tools and implements for treatment of materials, construction, and maintenance, ice picks, scissors, machetes, ticket punching instruments
- Animal slaughtering and butchering implements, cattle stunning appliances, hunting knives, tools for skinning animals
- Agricultural, gardening, and landscaping tools, budding knives, insecticide vaporizers, plant pruning scissors, scythes, shovels, tree pruners, weeding forks
- Fire tending implements, fire irons, fire bellows, caulking irons, crow bars, polishing irons
- Fastening and joining tools, screwdrivers, riveting hammers, wrenches
- Cutting, drilling, grinding, sharpening, and surface treatment hand tools, axes, sabres, swords, police batons, hand drills, hatchets, perforating tools, saw blades, tube cutting instruments, hand operated lifters
What Does Class 8 Not Cover?
You would not register a class 8 trademark if you were registering machines and implements driven by a motor, surgical cutlery, side arms being firearms, paper knives, or fencing weapons.
If there is a similar intellectual property already registered under the same class, then you won’t be able to get a trademark. Fortunately, you can search the USPTO database to check if your potential trademark is already in use. Before filing, it’s common to hire an attorney to perform a comprehensive trademark search and review the results. It’s a good idea to talk to a lawyer if you are unsure about whether your trademark will infringe on someone else’s intellectual property.
If you are unsure as to whether or not your intellectual property falls under class 8, then it’s a good idea to read through related classes. The USPTO has determined that applicants filing within class 8 often also file in the related classes. Related classes include class 7 (machines), class 21 (household utensils), class 37 (construction and repair services), and class 40 (material treatment services).
You don’t have to file your trademark under all of these classes, only the ones that directly apply.
What Does a Trademark Do?
Once you’ve registered for a class 8 trademark, you will need it to fight trademark infringement. You can lose your trademark if you fail to defend it. If you consistently fail to defend against infringement, then the USPTO considers your trademark “abandoned.”
However, holding a registered trademark can prevent “unfair competition,” a term that refers to imitations, knock offs, and general unauthorized sales. This can include malicious imitation.
Although there has to be potential for confusion to claim trademark infringement, many companies still defend their trademarks when there is minimal confusion. They do this in order to avoid abandoning their trademarks.
Certain types of trademark use are considered fair use, despite being unauthorized. This means that the other party is acting in a legal manner not likely to result in confusion of your trademark with theirs.
Claiming that one service is superior to another is an example of a fair use (“nominative use,” to be specific.) Likewise, parodies are usually fair use.
As with any business endeavor, your best bet is to do as much research as possible before registration. A thorough search of the USPTO database will save you a lot of work in the long run. In addition, talking to a lawyer about your potential trademark registration is a great idea. An experienced trademark lawyer will make it easier to protect your intellectual property at minimal expense to your company.
One last thing to keep in mind is renewing your trademark. If you do not keep up with the trademark maintenance documents, then you will lose your trademark. Luckily, this is easy to prevent.