Maybe in the back of your mind you think, “My kid could be a superstar one day.” Naturally you may want to protect his or her name. Can you trademark your baby’s name?
I started thinking about this question after a New York designer caused a stir this week when he tried to trademark Jay-Z and Beyonce’s daughter’s name, Blue Ivy Carter. Yup, a guy with a children’s clothing line thought “ca-ching, ca-ching” and applied for the trademark on January 11th (a mere 5 days after the baby’s birth).
Can a random stranger trademark your child’s name? Nope. According to the US Patent & Trademark Office, as part of the review process they’ll ask the following questions: Is this the name of a person? Is this person living? Do you have consent? So that guy’s request is going to be shot down and he’s out the $325 to file the application.
But my wheels started spinning and I wondered could I, as a parent, trademark my kids’ names?
Again, alas, the answer is no. For a different reason though. The US Patent and Trademark offices grants trademarks on goods and services. You can’t trademark a person’s name. But if you decided to have a line of unique baby leg warmers named “Brez Uno” then you could trademark the product.
“A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol, and/or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods of one party from those of others. A service mark is a word, phrase, symbol, and/or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of a service rather than goods. The term “trademark” is often used to refer to both trademarks and service marks.” (US Patent & Trademark Office)
If you have other random questions you’ve always wanted the answer to, I would be happy to put my investigative journalism skills to good use. Email me at Lisa@parentsdesk.com or comment below:
Category: Cool Stuff