Trademark Maintenance Costs
With some exceptions, a registered trademark will last indefinitely so long as the USPTO maintenance (or renewal) fees are paid and requirements met:
- Between the 5th and 6th years following the trademark’s registration date;
- Between the 9th and 10th years following the trademark’s registration; and
- Every 10 years thereafter.
5/6 Year Renewals
To renew your application at the 5/6 year deadline you will need to provide a “Declaration of Use and/or Excusable Nonuse” under Section 8 of the Lanham Act, which tells the USPTO that you have used your trademark continuously for the last five years or had a valid reason not to. If you fail to file a Section 8 affidavit within the deadline a grace period can be granted to permit a late filing.
The USPTO charges $100 per class for a Section 8 affidavit and an additional $100 per class if the affidavit is filed after the 5/6 deadline but during the grace period. Further, if your Section 8 filing is found to be deficient you will be charged yet an additional $100 per class to correct the deficiency.
9/10 Year Renewals and Every 10 Years Thereafter
To renew your application at the 9/10 year deadline you will need to provide another Section 8 Declaration as well as a Section 9 renewal application. Because these deadlines coincide the USPTO offers a combined Section 8 and 9 form that can be filed.
The USPTO charges $400 per class for a Section 9 application submitted by paper and $300 per class for a Section 9 application submitted electronically. Also, if you fail to file the Section 9 within the deadline you may file during a grace period for an additional $100 per class.
So watch out for those deadlines. If you were to file a combined 9/10 year Section 8 and 9 renewal on time your total cost would likely be $400 per class plus attorney fees. If, however, you miss the deadline and correct it during the grace period your total cost would be at least $600 per class plus attorney fees!
Incontestability (Section 15 Affidavit)
As early as 5 years after registration of your trademark you may be eligible to acquire a status of “incontestability”, which can be obtained by filing a Section 15 affidavit to demonstrate all the necessary requirements have been met. Because a Section 15 may not be filed any earlier than the 5/6 year renewal deadline, the USPTO offers a combined form for simultaneously submitting both a Section 8 and a Section 15 affidavit.
The USPTO charges $200 per class for a Section 15 affidavit