TMEP 1306.01(a): Use Is by Person Other than Owner of Certification Mark
October 2017 Edition of the TMEP
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1306.01(a) Use Is by Person Other than Owner of Certification Mark
A certification mark may not be used, in the trademark sense of "used," by the owner of the mark; it may be used only by a person or persons other than the owner of the mark. That is, the owner of a certification mark does not apply the mark to his or her goods or services and, in fact, usually does not attach or apply the mark at all. The mark is generally applied by other persons to their goods or services, with authorization from the owner of the mark.
The owner of a certification mark does not produce the goods or perform the services in connection with which the mark is used, and thus does not control their nature and quality. Therefore, it is not appropriate to inquire about control over the nature and quality of the goods or services. What the owner of the certification mark does control is use of the mark by others on their goods or services. This control consists of taking steps to ensure that the mark is applied only to goods or services that contain the characteristics or meet the requirements that the certifier/owner has established or adopted for the certification. See TMEP §1306.03(b) regarding submission of the standards established by the certifier to determine whether the certification mark may be used in relation to the goods and/or services of others.