The phrase “better late than never” often rings true. The phrase has been attributed to many, but some say it may have originated from Chaucer in the Canterbury Tales, circa 1386.
“Better late than never” certainly rings true with trademark protection and registration. While ideally a business should protects its trademarks from the outset — filing as the brand launches or even earlier (based on an intent-to-use the mark) — if that opportunity has passed it is still tremendously value to seek registration of the trademark, whether it has been in use one year, five years, or ten years. Because have it registered before an infringement or dispute is really the key, and because a dispute could always arise, a registration is better late than never. Because appearing in the USPTO database could prevent future brands from adopting a similar name at any time, a registration is better late than never. Because blocking domain names or social media names could always be useful, especially as new ones are introduced, a registration is better late than never. Because a trademark registration creates a valuable tangible asset that can be transferred or used as a security interest, a registration is better late than never.
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