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Sunday, August 2, 2009

U.S. Patent & Trademark Office Refuses Northwest.



On July 27, 2009, the United States Patent and Trademark Office officially refused registration of the application submitted by Northwest Association of Accredited Schools. A brief summary of the official letters is below:

REFUSAL: LIKELIHOOD OF CONFUSION UNDER SECTION 2(d)

Registration of the applied-for collective membership mark is refused because of a likelihood of confusion with the mark in U.S. Registration No. 2334969 [NAAS]. Trademark Act Section 2(d), 15 U.S.C. §1052(d); see TMEP §§1207.01 et seq. See the enclosed registration.

Likelihood of confusion may arise from the contemporaneous use of a collective membership mark on the one hand and a trademark or service mark on the other. The same standards used to determine likelihood of confusion between trademarks and service marks also apply to collective membership marks. See 15 U.S.C. §1052(d); In re National Novice Hockey League, Inc., 222 USPQ 638 (TTAB 1984); Allstate Life Ins. Co. v. Cuna International, Inc., 169 USPQ 313 (TTAB 1971), aff’d, 487 F.2d 1407, 180 USPQ 48 (C.C.P.A. 1973); Boise Cascade Corp. v. Mississippi Pine Manufacturers Assn., 164 USPQ 364 (TTAB 1969). TMEP § 1304.08(b)
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An NAAS Media Report is being prepared to document, discuss, and report the rejection.

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