USPTO approval of ITU application before using trademark?

Trademark Office approval not required before using ITU mark

There is no legal requirement to wait for USPTO approval of your Intent-To-Use application before you can begin using the mark. If you have started using the mark on all the goods or services in your ITU application, you can file an Amendment to Allege Use (AAU) prior to the time your application is published for opposition.

Filing an acceptable AAU during an earlier stage of your ITU application may speed up the registration because you will by pass the Notice of Allowance which would normally trigger a 6-month deadline for filing use evidence. Assuming no one opposes your mark and your use evidence is acceptable, your application will proceed to registration sooner.

Should you wait for USPTO approval before commencing use of your intent-to-use mark?

If you would prefer to see if your ITU application will be approved before commencing use, then it may be advisable to wait for an initial determination by the USPTO trademark examiner (i.e., examining attorney). It could take 3-6 months to receive an indication as to whether your mark may be refused.

Even if the trademark examining attorney approves your application, it is not a guarantee that your mark will register. Third parties will have an opportunity to oppose your application.

Filing multiple ITU applications concurrently for different marks

If you’re contemplating a few different names for your product and you can afford to wait a few months, then one strategy may be to file concurrent ITU applications for different marks. You then wait to see which marks will get rejected versus those that get approved.

Before filing, however, conduct knockout searches for any highly similar marks already filed with the USPTO. An experienced trademark attorney can provide counsel on not only searches, but also on any descriptiveness refusals you may encounter with marks that are too descriptive of your goods or services.

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Thank you for rating my post!

We want to do better.

Could you tell us what was missing in our post?

Innovation Capital Law Group
Ready to Slay Goliath?

What IP do you need?*

What IP do you need?*

(Check all that apply)

Your Name*

Your Name*

Your Email*

Your Email*

Your Phone Number

Your Phone Number

Design Patent Money-Back Guarantee
Get your design patent allowed or attorney's fees refunded. Call or email Vic to see if your design qualifies.

Not sure where to start? Email Vic at

Copyright © Vic Lin 2023