For many years, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has offered an online search engine that allows the public at large to search the Principal and Supplemental Registers kept by the USPTO for information about marks registered pursuant to federal law – the Trademark Electronic Search System, also known as TESS.
We encourage all of our clients to use online search tools such as TESS as part of their regular pre-adoption processes for picking and clearing new marks as a preliminary step to having more comprehensive searching done by in-house or outside trademark counsel. Search tools like TESS can be tremendously helpful in doing due diligence on marks being considered for adoption, use, and registration but are not necessarily a substitute for more formal trademark clearance processes.
The USPTO just announced that later this year TESS will be retired in favor of a new cloud-based search tool that the USPTO promises will make searching easier by providing users with stronger search syntax and new interfaces. The new tool, like TESS, will have both a simplified, basic search interface as well as a more advanced interface for more complex searching.
For now, the USPTO’s new search tool is known as “New – Trademark Search Beta and can accessed on the USPTO website.
Live online demonstrations of the new search tool will be available on Tuesday, September 26, 2023, from 11:00 a.m. to 12 p.m. ET and on Thursday, September 28, 2023, from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. ET. Attendance requires pre-registration.
More formal online training webinars will be offered by the USPTO in October on both basic and advanced trademark searching:
Basic: Monday, October 2, 2023, from 2:00 to 3:30 p.m. ET
Advanced: Monday, October 16, 2023, from 2:00 - 3:30 p.m. ET
If you have used TESS at all in the past for any reason, we encourage you to check out one of the live demonstrations next week. Regular users of TESS will almost certainly benefit from taking one of the more formal webinars in October. In any event, all of our trademark professionals at Calfee will be getting up to speed on the new search tool so that we can continue to provide our clients with state-of-the-art assistance in clearing and registering their marks.