You have worked hard getting known, building an enviable reputation in your area, for your restaurant or bar. What if that was all taken away tomorrow? The only way to know that you have exclusive use of the name of your bar or restaurant is with a federal trademark registration. This certificate means that you can prevent others from using that name nationwide for food and beverage services. However, a trademark for food and beverage services has some unique challenges.
First of all, many company names in the pub and restaurant field are the names or surnames of the owners. Surnames are specifically barred from trademark protection, unless you can show acquired distinctiveness. That means that people attribute a secondary meaning to your name in the field of food and beverage services. They associate it with quality, or a certain area or food style, etc. rather than just a surname. So, before you can get a trademark for a mark that contains a surname, you need to show all the marketing efforts you have made that have given your name that secondary meaning.
Choosing the classifications is also important. Food and Beverage Services are in class 43 (Officially titled: "Restaurant services, namely, providing of food and beverages for consumption on and off the premises"), however other marks that may be cited as confusing with your may come from the prepared food area (a totally different class, generally trademark class 29), so you need to be aware that marks in different classes may be confusing with one another. A good search can help alleviate any problems before the filing.
Locking down your brand will provide your business with security in the future, and will give you an asset that grows in value as your business grows. File a trademark today to protect your restaurant or pub business' brand and goodwill. We're always here to answer questions.