TMEP 1211.01(a)(iii): Geographical Significance

October 2017 Edition of the TMEP

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1211.01(a)(iii)    Geographical Significance

A term with surname significance may not be primarily merely a surname if that term also has a well-known geographical meaning. In re Colt Indus. Operating Corp., 195 USPQ 75 (TTAB 1977) (holding FAIRBANKS not primarily merely a surname because the geographical significance of the mark was determined to be just as dominant as its surname significance). However, the fact that a term is shown to have some minor significance as a geographical term will not dissipate its primary significance as a surname. In re Hamilton Pharm. Ltd., 27 USPQ2d 1939 (TTAB 1993) (holding HAMILTON primarily merely a surname).