I Have an LLC. Do I Need a Trademark?
We get this question a lot.
It’s natural to think that because you have the LLC registered for a name, you don’t need a trademark.
But the LLC doesn’t protect your brand.
The LLC is what makes you a legal company.
It creates certain legal protections for you and your company. You won’t be personally responsible for any of your business debts.
It’s true that people in your state can’t register the exact brand name. But they can register similar ones. And people can register your exact brand name in other states. And they can use your exact brand name as an unregistered business.
There’s no brand protection involved.
The trademark protects your brand.
A trademark gives you the exclusive right to use a brand nationally. And it's based on who files the application first.
So if someone registers the trademark for your brand first, they’ll own the rights to your name nationally.
It doesn’t matter that you have an LLC for that brand name.
To continue operating nationally, you'll have to rebrand.
Think about how many things feature your brand: your website, social media, business cards, products, marketing materials, press links, inventory, etc. You'll need to change all of that, pull back all inventory, and possibly pay monetary damages. You'll lose customers, money, and valuable momentum.
So you need to own your brand with a trademark now!
Before someone else does.