Public Comments on Changes in Requirements for Affidavits or Declarations of Use, Continued Use, or Excusable Nonuse in Trademark Cases

From: Gary Tannenbaum, Esq. []
Sent: Thursday, August 11, 2016 1:29 PM
To: TM FR Notices <TMFRNotices@USPTO.GOV>
Subject: Comment to Proposed Rule PTO-T-2016-0002


To Whom it May Concern: 

I am writing to express concern over the proposed rule change.   The existing rule (which requires a registrant to provide proof of commercial use for one item in each class of goods & services) is clear and less susceptible to discriminatory application than the proposed rule (which would allow examining attorneys to apply some sort of discretion).  Who will be required to provide multiple specimens and who will not? Without any standards or procedures to follow, problems will abound. 

Because the proposed rule is not capable of being applied equally to all applicants, it will be very difficult to predict costs.  It is not clear if the USPTO plans to assess additional fees for those applicants and declarants who must submit multiple specimens of use.  Even if no additional fee is assessed, however, the compliance burden on those subjected to this “additional scrutiny” may be great.   There is an equal protection problem in that, it seems to me.

The rules governing what is (and what is not) an adequate specimen of use should be relaxed for those registrants subjected to this additional scrutiny. Assuming that a registrant has provided an adequate specimen of use for at least one item, it seems a far less rigorous standard would be appropriate for other goods in the same class.


Gary Tannenbaum, Esq.                Direct:  215-690-3830     Fax:  215-635-7212

101 Greenwood Avenue, 5th Floor
Jenkintown PA 19046