Becoming a trademark practitioner

Requirements to practice trademark law

Any individual who is an active member in good standing of the highest court of any U.S. state (including the District of Columbia, and any, commonwealth or territory of the U.S.) may represent others before the USPTO in trademark matters. Attorneys are not required to apply for registration or recognition to practice before the USPTO in trademark matters. See 37 C.F.R. §§ 2.17; 11.1; 11.14. Subject to limited exceptions, individuals who are not active U.S.-licensed attorneys in good standing may not represent others before the USPTO in trademark matters.

All attorneys and agents practicing before the USPTO in trademark or patent matters are subject to the USPTO Rules of Professional Conduct set forth in 37 C.F.R. §§ 11.101 et. seq. and disciplinary jurisdiction under 37 C.F.R. § 11.19(a). Additionally, unauthorized individuals who represent others before the USPTO are subject to the disciplinary jurisdiction of the USPTO. See 37 C.F.R. §11.19(a).

Becoming a trademark attorney

As noted above, U.S.-licensed attorneys need not apply for registration to practice trademark law before the USPTO. If you are a law student interested in becoming a trademark attorney, you may want to consider participating in the USPTO’s Law School Clinic Certification Program. Only law students enrolled in the clinic program at a participating law school may receive limited recognition to practice in trademark matters.