Earlier this summer, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) announced that as of August 3, 2019, all foreign-domiciled trademark applicants, registrants, and parties to Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) proceedings must be represented by an attorney who is licensed to practice in the United States. This will apply to all trademark applicants, registrants, and parties whose permanent legal residence or principal place of business is outside the United States. These parties must all utilize a U.S.-licensed attorney to represent them in all USPTO trademark matters.
In addition, the USPTO will require that all U.S.-licensed attorneys who represent anyone before the USPTO in trademark matters must confirm that they are an active member in good standing of their bar, and must provide their bar membership information. According to the director of the USPTO, Andrei Iancu:
Businesses rely on the U.S. trademark register to make important legal decisions about their brands. In order to maintain the accuracy and integrity of the register, for the benefit of all its users, the USPTO must have the appropriate tools to enforce compliance by all applicants and registrants. This rule is a significant step in combatting fraudulent submissions.”
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