USPTO takes strong measures against fake IP representatives with low-costAAA IPRIGHT2
The status of fake goods, fake services have been going on in the markets probably from the beginning of humanity. However, it is still a rare sight to behold in 2022 when it is the lawyer, the representative are the subjects that have been counterfeited. Over the past years, the USPTO has taken strong measures against fake IP representatives with low-cost that have been terrorizing the market.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has recently published a statement that there have been three fake representative companies stirring the US market.
Accordingly, the USPTO has terminated over 5,500 trademark applications filed by these three low-cost trademark filing companies. After investigation, they concluded that these companies are neither law firms nor have lawyers in their staff, and thus cannot operate in the US.
They tricked the customers, the applicants that they are reputable law firms, making the customers pay them a huge amount of money to register their trademark.
Although the applications are indeed filed, most of them are not qualified and the most important matter is that they have no right to file those applications for other parties.
Faking the IP representatives
The USPTO has then issued a Notice of Show Cause Order to ABTACH Ltd., 360 Digital Marketing LLC, and Retrocube LLC, all three of which exist under 30 trade names.
The ridiculous thing is that these companies aren’t even US-based firms. These websites were actually operated by a Pakistani firm that is now being investigated in Pakistan for its illegal activities, mainly the action of faking the IP representative ID to collect illegal payments from US clients.
The way these organizations trick their clients that they have indeed filed their trademark applications is that first, they filed single-class trademark applications and then altered the receipts to indicate they paid for multiple class filings.
Not counting the service charge that every law firms take, the shady organizations gain even more profits by making their clients pay the amount shown in the fake receipts for the multiple class filings.
In addition, shady law firms will also deliberately make mistakes in the applications and blame them on the clients for not providing accurate information, or not enough information, etc. Their clients would then receive Office Actions and the companies will charge them additional fees in order to make all necessary corrections in the trademark applications.
They also forged signatures on trademark applications, misinformed their clients on Office Action deadlines, etc. in order to best abuse their client’s lack of information on the registration procedure.
Sarmad Hasan Manto, managing partner at Audiri Vox in Karachi stated about the statues of fake representatives in the world: “There are a number of low-cost trademark filing firms in Pakistan. These are neither law firms nor IP agents. Rather, most of them are either paralegals or accountants who try to make a few extra bucks through filing trademark applications.”
Manto also gives out advice to clients who are planning to register and protect their IP rights in the market: “As these low-cost trademarks and patent filing firms do not have the required knowledge and expertise, a lot of mistakes are conducted while filing the applications which result in office actions. Again, due to lack of knowledge and experience, the office actions are not properly responded which results in rejections. This ultimately costs more to the client and many times results in loss of their valuable rights. Accordingly, rights holders should be vigilant while appointing a firm to file/prosecute their IP rights and should not base the decision merely based on cost-effectiveness”
– You could check Required documents of filing trademark in USA here.
– You could see What needs to be done after registering a trademark in US? here.
– You could visit here to see What is use in commerce of filing trademark in USA.
– You could also check here to see Procedure of Trademark in USA.
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