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This article is written by Kshitij who is pursuing a Certificate Course in Intellectual Property Law and Prosecution from LawSikho.


Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) is a public online database used for searching United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) (it is a federal agency for granting U.S. patents and registering trademarks). It is kept up by the USPTO and consistently refreshed in order to give a thorough glance at all enrolled and forthcoming government brand names in the United States. Notwithstanding, You ought to likewise take care to recollect that TESS is certifiably not a completely extensive end-all-be-all data set. 

It doesn’t gather data from any of the state brand name divisions, and it has no chance to get of following custom-based law brand names or different uses outside of government enrollment. Thus, while you ought to consistently begin your brand name search with TESS, you ought to check different data sets too to ensure an unregistered brand name doesn’t sneak by your radar. A typical method to get around this issue is to hold an accomplished lawyer who can make a brand name scan report for your business. 

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Though such reports are frequently used for a bigger brand name enlistment case, however, nothing preventing you from making one yourself.

Trademark Electronic Search System

The Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) is a database of every U.S. trademark that has been registered or applied for. Each record in TESS includes many important elements of the mark. Each element is a searchable piece of information. Searching TESS allows you to find:

  • Any marks that have common elements.
  • A specific mark if you know one or more of its elements.

TESS is expected for use by the overall population. Because of restrictions of gear and transfer speed, TESS isn’t planned to be a hotspot for mass downloads of USPTO information. Mass information might be bought from USPTO at cost. People, organizations, IP locations, or squares of IP tends to who, essentially, refuse assistance to the overall population by creating abnormally high quantities of day-by-day TESS gets to (searches, pages, or hits), regardless of whether produced physically or in a robotized design, might be denied admittance to these workers without notice.

Before conducting your search, you must understand the following:

(1) What the database includes?

(2) How to construct a complete search?

(3) How to interpret the search results?

The Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) is accessible on the whole Patent and Trademark resource centers. Likewise, these libraries have CD-ROMs containing the data set of enlisted and forthcoming imprints; be that as it may, the CD-ROMs don’t contain pictures of the plan marks. The Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) of USPTO has been refreshed by the expansion of two new highlights, the “Picture List” and the “Various Searching Ability”. The previous new component will permit a client to see the pictures of Trademarks, showing up in three segments in the query items, while the last would help in different pursuits without a moment’s delay.

Why should I use TESS?

One of the foundations of trademark law is the possibility that no two brand names ought to be adequately comparative to each other that they make buyer disarray. 

For instance, the USPTO could never let two organizations with similar name register brand names in a similar industry, as doing so would just befuddle shoppers regarding which one is which. In any case, you can (as a rule) register a comparable brand name to a current business if your business and the current business work in various enterprises. This is the reason, for instance, “Delta Airlines” and “Delta Faucets” can exist simultaneously as enrolled marks since one arrangement with aircraft administrations while different sells a customer item for washrooms and kitchens. 

At the point when you register another brand name with the USPTO, an inspecting lawyer working for the USPTO will play out a brand name look for your imprint as a piece of the typical application measure. 

Put another way, when you present your application, an accomplished lawyer will investigate your imprint to check whether any confusingly comparative stamps as of now exist in your industry. Thus, you ought to consistently do a comparable hunt yourself before you present your application since you know beyond all doubt that a lawyer will pass judgment on your application dependent on these standards.

How to use TESS?

The USPTO furnishes various assets on their site with extra data on the who, what, when, where, and why of brand name enrollment. It’s enthusiastically suggested that you audit these assets before you present your application. 

Nonetheless, at a fundamental level the brand name search interaction can be separated into three separate stages: 

  1. Build up a hunt plan that incorporates all potential imprint varieties. 
  2. Run these varieties through TESS to check whether you can discover any confusingly comparable imprints. 
  3. Audit your outcomes (ideally with a lawyer).

Develop your search plan

This progression is very simple, and you can do it at your own comfort as you conceptualize potential thoughts and varieties for your new brand name.

Fundamentally, you need to record a waitlist of the expected stamps and names you like the most, and afterward, make a rundown of all potential varieties of that mark. Thus, for instance, on the off chance that I needed to enlist the name “Ballet dancer Photo Frames” as another brand name, I would likewise need to record any potential varieties of this imprint so I can ensure there are no clashing imprints in the government register.

By and large, you ought to record opportunities for the entirety of the accompanying:

  • All types of the unmistakable components of the imprint (for example plurals);
  • Each unmistakable component alone (for example word by word); Abbreviations and a big motivator for they;
  • All the legitimate word counterparts, or equivalents;
  • Segment portions of individual terms when vital;
  •  Phonetic counterparts (for example fishing/phishing); and
  •  Every single English same (for example theater/theater).

Critically, you should run these renditions (both the first and any varieties) through TESS when you play out your last brand name search. Therefore, having a rundown of all conceivable pursuit strings is vital to a careful brand name search.

Run Your Ideas Through TESS

When you first enter the Trademark Electronic Search System, the program will offer you three different levels of search:

  • Basic.
  • Structured.
  • Freeform.

This reach-in intricacy both in query items and in the information on the TESS framework itself. You should consistently experience these in a specific order so you can limit your hunt as you acquaint yourself with TESS. 

For instance, the best spot to begin is ordinarily to play out a Basic brand name search utilizing the entirety of the terms on your rundown. On the off chance that you discover any confusingly comparative imprints to your own through this Basic brand name search, all things considered, you’ll need to get back to the planning phase to draft some new brand name thoughts. 

Nonetheless, regardless of whether the Basic pursuit restores no outcomes you actually need to invest somewhat more energy in the program to twofold check the outcomes. Regularly, this implies playing out an exhaustive organized brand name search on every one of your inquiry terms to guarantee that none of them encroaches too intently on an all-around existing imprint. You can discover the guidelines to perform such an inquiry on the USPTO’s site. Notwithstanding, this is generally where individuals feel that they may require the help of a lawyer, as demonstrating a negative (for example demonstrating that your imprint doesn’t encroach upon another) can be somewhat troublesome by and by.

Review Your Results (With an Attorney)

A typical explanation that your brand name application could be denied is because of a likelihood of confusion between your trademark and an existing one.

While looking through TESS and precluding any government brand names from the probability of disarray will extraordinarily expand your odds, leading an exhaustive hunt outside of that will help much more. 

Therefore, you ought to likewise look for your imprint (and any relating terms) in information bases like your state’s brand name library. You ought to likewise do a speedy pursuit utilizing Google or a comparative internet searcher. Regardless of whether your brand name search confesses all, notwithstanding, there could, in any case, be legitimate issues that keep your brand name from passing. 

Enrollment isn’t constantly ensured, yet a private brand name lawyer can assist you with bettering comprehend the cycle, inform you on the best course regarding activity, manage lawful issues, and play out the brand name leeway look for you.


Fundamentally, the additional time you spend looking in TESS and different sources, the more grounded the probability that your brand name application will pass. 

In spite of the fact that the brand name application interaction can be overpowering, playing out a brand name search all alone doesn’t need to be troublesome. If you in the end recruit a lawyer, doing an underlying hunt through TESS can be an incredible spot to begin. Truth be told before you plan your brand name, looking through TESS can assist you with finding out about how to make yours more one of a kind than others out there. The more your brand name sticks out, the more observable your business is.


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