Putting aside foreign bases for filing a Federal trademark application, a Federal trademark application has essentially two bases in which to file. The first basis is that the trademark is “used in commerce.” The second basis is that an applicant has an “intent-to-use” a mark in commerce. The principle difference between these two filing bases is whether use of the mark has occurred on all the goods/services identified in the trademark application. If you have already used your mark in commerce with all the goods/services in your application, you may file under the “use in commerce” basis….


If a person or entity does not qualify to file a trademark application “in commerce,” then an applicant may file said Federal trademark application under an “intent-to-use” basis if certain qualifications are met. Specifically, to file an intent-to-use trademark or service application, the applicant must have a good faith or bona fide intention to use said mark in commerce with all the goods and/or in connection with all the services listed in said application in the near future. Intent-to-use trademark applications are referred to in shorthand as “ITU” trademark applications, and are filed under Section 1(b) of the Trademark Act. Some factors to consider when determining whether you comply with the qualifications for an ITU trademark i…