The purpose of a "mark" is to distinguish goods and services from those of others. Trademark, Service Mark, and Trade Name registrations are administered at the state level in the Office of the Secretary of State. Trademark and service mark registrations were codified in 1981. Trade name registrations were codified in 1988.
Although the term "Trademark" is often used to refer to both trademarks and service marks, the two marks serve different purposes. A trademark is used to identify goods made or sold. A service mark is used to identify services rendered. A trade name is used to identify the business, vocation, occupation, or profession.
Trademarks, service marks and trade names may be registered by submitting an application for registration, three specimens and the registration fee. The effective term for mark registrations is five years. Trademarks, service marks and trade names may be renewed by submitting an application for renewal, one specimen and the renewal fee. If the owner of a mark changes as a result of lawful transfer of the mark, a notarized statement of assignment must be filed in this office with the assignment fee.
Rejection/denial of mark registration by this office does not prevent use of the mark. Rights of ownership are achieved through the common laws of adoption and usage in Alabama. The Common Law of Alabama states that once you adopt and use a mark and are documented as the first to use such mark, you are entitled to exclusive rights to that mark. Any conflict of ownership is handled outside the Secretary of State's Office and is an issue for the courts.
You may search online records to retrieve information for all marks registered in the state.
Lands & Trademarks / Authentications
11 South Union St., Suite 224
Montgomery, AL 36130
PO Box 5616
Montgomery, AL 36103-5616