Trademark Specimen showing use.

Trademark Specimen showing use of the Mark to identify your goods/services must be submitted with a trademark application. The specimen must show the Mark as filed and identify the goods/services specified in the application, such as packaging, labels, menu, webpage. Likely a picture of your product with a tag or label or packaging showing the mark and good/product.

Products: Examples of specimens for goods are tags, labels, instruction manuals, containers, photographs that show the mark on the actual goods or packaging, or displays associated with the actual goods at their point of sale. One is not acceptable for the other. Digitally-photographed image of product in packaging as used in commerce.

Services: Examples of specimens for services are leaflets, handbills, brochures, advertising circulars and other printed advertising material, while normally acceptable for showing use in connection with services, generally are not acceptable specimens for showing trademark use in connection with goods.

Submitting a trademark specimen is a required element of trademark registration.  The trademark specimen is an actual example of the mark being used in commerce or in connection with offered goods and/or services.  A proper trademark specimen submittal for goods would be evidence showing the mark on the actual goods themselves or on the packaging containing the goods.  Advertisements clearly displaying a particular mark would be a good specimen submittal for trademarks involved with services.  When filing a trademark registration based on a mark that is currently being used in commerce, a trademark specimen is required to be submitted with rest of the application.  If filing a trademark application with the intent to use the trademark eventually, the trademark specimen must still be submitted later when filing the “Allegation of Use.”

By Mat Grell, US Trademark Attorney