How to Register a Trademark for Alcoholic Beverages


Trademark law is a form of intellectual property protection that identifies the source of a product or service, and it can be used to prevent others from using your trademarked name. Trademarking an alcoholic beverage is important because it gives you exclusive rights over the use of your brand name in connection with your product or service. This means that nobody else can sell alcoholic beverages under your brand name unless they have permission from you.

What is an Alcohol Trademark?

An alcohol trademark is a word, phrase, symbol, or design that identifies the source of goods or services. For example, if you own a wine brand called “Vino” and want to protect your intellectual property rights in it, then you can apply for federal registration for VINO as an alcohol trademark with the USPTO.

Trademarks are generally used to prevent confusion about product origin—for example, when customers see the Coca-Cola mark on soft drinks they know they can trust them as being genuine Coca-Cola products. If someone else used this same mark on similar goods (e.g., bottled water) it may cause confusion among consumers who believe that these products are either related or produced by the same company as Coca-Cola’s soft drinks (and potentially lead people to purchase counterfeit versions).

When can I use the Federal Registration Symbol?

You can use the federal registration symbol (®) as soon as your application has been approved by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). It’s a good idea to put it on your product labels once you receive approval, so customers know that you have a federally registered trademark.

If your application for a trademark is still pending, you can use the pending status symbol (™) instead of the registered status symbol when appropriate if two conditions are met:

  • You have filed an amendment or statement of use in which you claim intent to use the mark in commerce on or in connection with goods or services before an examining attorney at USPTO
  • Your amended application, statement of use, and/or extension request was filed within six months of filing a petition under 15 U.S.C §1062(b)(3)(A)(ii)

How do I File a Trademark Application?

To file a trademark application, you must submit a completed U.S. Trademark Application, available through the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office website ( You can also print out the form from the website and mail it to the address provided on the form. You will need to provide information about your business (if applicable), product or service, trademark, and a class of goods or services for which you are seeking registration in order to complete this application process successfully.

When will the Trademark Office Examine my Trademark Application?

Trademark applications are examined by the Trademark Office in order to check whether the trademark meets all legal requirements.

When will my application be examined?

If you filed your application electronically, it will normally be examined within 2-3 months from the filing date.

If you filed your application on paper and paid extra fees for expedited examination, it may take up to 8-12 months for examination and approval.

What happens if the USPTO Approves my Trademark Application?

If the USPTO approves your trademark application, you will receive an official trademark certificate that contains the mark, a description of how it’s used, and other details.

You can use your registered trademark on your goods or services to show that they’re yours. You can also use it in advertising and promotion to let people know about those goods and services. And if you want to start a business using this mark (or already have one), you can use it in domain names for websites related to those goods or services.

To infringe a registered trademark, the defendant’s use of the trademark must either be identical to the trademark, or it must cause a likelihood of confusion.

The owner of a registered mark has the right to prevent others from using identical marks in connection with similar goods or services. For example, you cannot use “Coke” as part of your company name if you are selling soft drinks; the Coca-Cola Company owns rights to that word and you will be liable for infringement if you do so. This is true even if your product is not related to Coca-Cola’s products in any way (your product could be something completely unrelated like an oil filter).

In order to establish infringement, however, there must be confusion among consumers as to whether your goods are coming from some other source besides Coca-Cola. In other words, people must think that when they buy from you they’re getting something from Coke instead! So make sure that whatever name or logo you choose for your business does not resemble any trademarks owned by competitors already out there on the market – otherwise, their lawyers may come knocking on your door someday soon.

The party filing the trademark application has to indicate what goods or services the mark is being used in connection with. The goods and services must be specified in the application and registration certificate if they are different from those initially filed.

If the applicant is not sure which classes would best describe their goods or services, they can request that the USPTO do a classification search of all possible class numbers where they might find their mark’s use.

When applying for your trademark you need to specify whether your goods or services are “completed” or “intended.”

When applying for your trademark you need to specify whether your goods or services are “completed” or “intended.” Once you go through this process and get approved by the USPTO you’ll receive a trademark certificate.

If you plan on selling your product, it’s best to say that it’s intended so that when sales begin, you can file for a trademark.


You should know that filing a trademark application with the USPTO is not sufficient for protecting your brand, as you also need to file for state trademark registration. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Register your trademark in each state where you plan to sell products.
  • File an intent-to-use application with the USPTO within six months of using your mark in interstate commerce or before starting use if there are extenuating circumstances (e.g., foreign filing).

The good news is that no one can stop you from using a mark if it isn’t registered yet, but only if there isn’t any confusion among consumers about who owns it or what it represents. So don’t wait too long and make sure people remember who owns what!


If you’re in the business of making alcoholic beverages, your brand name may qualify for federal protection as a trademark. The process of registering your mark is relatively straightforward, but it’s also important to be aware of the legal pitfalls that could derail your efforts. If you have questions about trademark law or are looking for help with a federal trademark application, contact us today.

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