Inbound Madrid Protocol applicants

white trademark symbol with arrow pointing inside the outline of the United States on a yellow circle background

To register your trademark in the United States using the Madrid Protocol, you must first own an international registration issued by the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). You can then request to extend the protection of the international registration to the United States.

We process requests for extension of protection the same as any other U.S. trademark application, and a registered extension of protection provides all the same legal rights as any other U.S. trademark registration.

If you haven't applied for an international registration, consult your country’s trademark office for more information.

Alternatively, you can file a trademark application directly with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) instead of using the Madrid system. Learn the basics of filing a U.S. trademark application.

For an overview of the benefits of using the Madrid system to protect your trademark internationally, see the International Bureau’s benefits of the Madrid System. For tips on designating the United States of America in an international registration, read the Madrid Highlights, March 2015 Special Edition

How to request extension of protection to the United States

To register your trademark in the United States using the Madrid Protocol, you must designate the United States for extension of protection in one of two ways:

Requirement for a U.S.-licensed attorney

The USPTO requires applicants domiciled outside the United States to have a U.S.-licensed attorney represent them in their USPTO trademark proceedings. For example, if we issue a provisional refusal of your application, your U.S.-licensed attorney must respond and represent you throughout the rest of the proceeding with the USPTO. Learn more about hiring a U.S.-licensed attorney.

We strongly recommend you consult with a U.S.-licensed attorney to help you understand the legal requirements for registration before designating the United States in your international application or subsequent designation.

How your request is examined

With limited exceptions, all U.S. laws and rules that apply to a U.S. trademark application also apply to a request for extension of protection filed through the Madrid Protocol. We refer to these requests as Section 66(a) applications, and we examine them in the same manner as U.S. applications. Learn more about our trademark examination process.

After your request is approved

If our examination determines that your request for extension of protection meets all the requirements for registration under U.S. law, we’ll publish your trademark in our Trademark Official Gazette (TMOG). For thirty days after publication, anyone who believes they will be harmed by your mark registering in the United States can try to oppose your U.S. registration. If no one files an opposition against your mark, the trademark in your extension of protection will be registered in the United States.