TMEP 1304.03: Examination of Collective Membership Mark Applications

This is the October 2015 Edition of the TMEP

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1304.03    Examination of Collective Membership Mark Applications

An application to register a collective membership mark on the Principal Register must meet all the criteria for registration of other marks on the Principal Register. 15 U.S.C. §1054; see 37 C.F.R. §2.46. Likewise, when determining the registrability of a collective membership mark on the Supplemental Register, the same standards are used as are applied to other types of marks. See 37 C.F.R. §2.47.

The examination of collective membership mark applications is conducted in the same manner as the examination of applications to register trademarks and service marks, using the same criteria of registrability. Thus, the same standards generally applicable to trademarks and service marks are used in considering issues such as descriptiveness or disclaimers. See Racine Indus. Inc. v. Bane-Clene Corp., 35 USPQ2d 1832, 1837 (TTAB 1994); In re Ass’n of Energy Eng’rs, Inc., 227 USPQ 76, 77 (TTAB 1985); In re Int’l Ass’n for Enterostomal Therapy, Inc., 218 USPQ 343 (TTAB 1983). However, use (specimens) and ownership requirements are slightly different due to the nature of collective membership marks indicating membership rather than commercial origin.

See TMEP §1207.04 for information regarding seeking a concurrent use registration.