Trademark searching is conducted in two phases. The first phase is the preliminary trademark search followed by the comprehensive trademark search. The reason trademark searching follows this process is solely to manage trademark attorney fees and trademark search company costs. Trademark search companies usually charge about $800 for a comprehensive trademark search. A comprehensive trademark search is a search that looks in various databases for common law or unregistered trademarks. If an attorney reviews the comprehensive trademark search report for you, the total cost of a comprehensive trademark search could be $1,200 to $2,000.
A preliminary trademark search costs less than a comprehensive trademark search. A preliminary search looks in the USPTO’s Trademark Electronic Search System for any registered trademarks. A preliminary trademark search conducted by a trademark attorney will cost $300-$700.
AILPA recently released its 2017 Economic Study, and reported that the median cost of a clearance trademark search is $1,100 in trademark attorney fees. This number is based on an outside law firm performing the search. $1,100 is a lot of money to spend on a trademark clearance search, but as legal salaries continue to rise, so will this median number. The national average salary for a first-year associate in a law firm is about $153,000. In fact, the Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy law firm recently announced that its starting salaries for first-year attorneys was being raised to a whopping $190,000. The national average of a trademark paralegal is also high at about $55,000. And these numbers do not include other employment expenses like overhead and benefits.
As we discussed before, trademark searching is deceptively complex because of the nuance involved. But a computer can adequately account for the nuance and produce accurate results at a significant discount to the cost of a manual search. This does not mean that computers are here to replace attorneys, paralegals, or other professional trademark searchers. Instead, it is an opportunity to utilize technology to make the trademark clearance process more efficient, and change the way attorneys, paralegals, and professional trademark searchers are used.
Instead of paying hundreds to thousands of dollars in trademark attorney fees and costs from trademark search companies, have BOB conduct the search and the search results interpreted by the outside firm. At $49.99-$14.99 per name, there is no outside firm that can be as cost efficient as BOB.