Let's say SuperCool, Inc. sold cooler under the name "SuperCool" and the company went out of business. The trade name "SuperCool" is well-known within the niche, but it was never registered in USPTO. Would it be OK for a different company to appropriate the name for their own product?

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    My guess is yes - because there is no harm to the defunct entity and no one who can come after you with a claim. As there is no registration in the USPTO it would be difficult (but not necessarily impossible) for someone to claim they bought the Trademark unless they were already making products with that name. I'm guessing that were you to register the trademark with the USPTO they would have a problem coming after you.
    – davidgo
    Nov 29, 2019 at 17:44
  • You could register the trademark yourself and hope nobody objects. If you only want protection that nobody complains about your use, you could ask a lawyer how to apply for trademark protection, only to the point where you can show that nobody complained about your application, without going through the full process.
    – gnasher729
    Aug 26, 2020 at 7:11

1 Answer 1


A trademark is only a trademark while it’s used

One of the grounds for applying to deregister a registered trademark is that it is not being used by the owner. The same would apply to common law trademarks.

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