Protecting your name with a trademark is very important in today’s music industry. Acts are increasingly making more money with ventures outside of the traditional recording industry, and having a trademarked name increases legal protection (just ask Blue Ivy). One Go Forth reader sent in the following question about trademarking a name:
Q: How does one legally secure a band/artist name so that no legal issues arise when they become exposed/signed, etc.?
A: First, do a search on Google and the USPTO database to make sure that the name is not already being used. Secondly, contact an attorney to file for federal tradename/service name protection for the artist/band name. For more information on filing for a trademark/service name, see http://www.uspto.gov/trademarks/process/index.jsp.
Want your music law questions answered? Submit it here for a chance to see your answer in the next Legal Corner.
The purpose of this article is to foster an open dialogue and not to establish firm policies or best practices. Needless to say, this is not a substitute for legal advice. In any particular case, you should consult with lawyers experienced in the field you are in and licensed within your state. Depending on your specific situation, answers other than those outlined in this blog may be appropriate.
Want more (free!) DIY music tips?
Subscribe to the DIY Music Insider. Every Tuesday, you'll get tips, tools and resources to help you get more done, reach more fans and make more money.
As a bonus, you'll also get a copy of The DIY Musician's Tech Toolbox, a must-have resource list of tools that will help you manage your music career like a pro!