TMEP 809.01(a): Inquiry/Applicant’s Response Regarding Meaning in a Foreign Language

October 2017 Edition of the TMEP

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809.01(a)    Inquiry/Applicant’s Response Regarding Meaning in a Foreign Language

If it is necessary to make a separate inquiry regarding the meaning of non-English wording, the examining attorney should provide the applicant with the correct format for a translation or transliteration statement. See TMEP §809.03.  If a general inquiry is made regarding meaning under 37 C.F.R. §2.61(b) (i.e., whether the term has significance in the relevant trade, any geographical significance, or any meaning in a foreign language), the applicant’s response may not be in the correct format for the translation or transliteration statement.  When an applicant’s response to an inquiry regarding the meaning of non-English wording includes statements that are not related to the translation or transliteration of such wording, the examining attorney must ensure that only statements regarding the translation or transliteration are entered in the relevant Trademark database using the appropriate format for printing on any registration certificate that may issue. See TMEP §809.03.

Similarly, if the applicant responds to an inquiry regarding non-English wording that "the mark has only trademark significance," or in some similar manner, the examining attorney must not enter the statement in that form in the Trademark database. Instead, the examining attorney must ensure that the statement is reformatted appropriately, to reflect that the wording has no meaning, in the relevant Trademark database for printing. See TMEP §809.03. It is not necessary to issue an examiner’s amendment in such cases.