Oregon Trademark Registration


Clients often inquire whether they should register their trademarks at the State or Federal level. Starting with the assumption that even small local businesses may encounter a challenge to their trademark in the future, I generally try to impress upon them the advantages of federal registration. After all, many of my clients end up being successful and seek to expand outside of Oregon’s borders. The Internet provides opportunities for national and global expansion, even for the smallest Oregon businesses.  It is therefore important for businesses of all types and sizes to choose and protect their trademarks with care…often this can mean protection at BOTH the State and Federal level.

Here’s a quick primer on registration of a trademark in Oregon:

Trademarks are registered with the Oregon Secretary of State. There is a non-refundable fee of $50 for filing a trademark application, and the registration must be renewed every 5 years. The Secretary of State website provides access to trademark registration forms and a searchable database of active trademark registrations.


Registration of a trademark with the Oregon Secretary of State creates a legal presumption of the registrant’s ownership of the mark and the registrant’s exclusive right to use the mark in Oregon commerce in connection with the goods or services described in the application. (A federal registration would protect your trademark in all states where it is used.)

The Oregon Trademark Act (ORS 647) protects words, names, symbols or designs, or any combinations thereof when they are used to distinguish the source of the goods or services rendered by one party from the goods or services of another party. Marks are checked against other marks registered in Oregon, but not against corporate, fictitious, or assumed names.

Oregon trademark rights arise from actual use of the mark in commerce, i.e. there are no “intent-to-use” applications.

A mark cannot be registered until it has been used in Oregon. Oregon defines a mark being “used” when it is placed in any manner on the goods or their containers or on the tags or labels affixed thereto, or when it is used to identify the services of one person and distinguish them from the services of others, and such goods or services are sold, distributed, or rendered in Oregon.

So what are some of the main benefits of state registration over federal registration?  It’s cheaper (State – $50/class vs. Federal – $275/class) and quicker. I’ve seen turnaround of weeks, not months or years as with the USPTO. State registration can be a good remedy for a purely local entity. State registration provides an increased level of trademark protection…at least you can claim protection on your “home turf.”  However, in the long run, I’d recommend that any entity which anticipates expanding outside of Oregon, particularly via Internet “e-commerce,” should seek federal trademark registration to best protect their valuable trademark rights.

Oregon trademark registrations must be renewed every 5 years.

A trademark registered under Oregon law:

  • Has a term of five years from the date of the registration.
  • May be renewed for successive five-year periods if statutory renewal requirements are met.

An Oregon trademark registrant may renew a registration for successive five-year periods by filing an application for renewal within 180 days before the expiration of the registration. The renewal application must include:

  • A renewal fee.
  • A verified statement that the mark has been and is still in use.
  • A specimen showing actual use of the mark on or in connection with the relevant goods or services.

(Or. Rev. Stat. § 647.055.)

I look forward to hearing from proponents of State registration…how has an Oregon State registration uniquely benefitted either you or your clients?

On Electric sues OEG for trademark infringement, unfair competition


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The plaintiff in this trademark lawsuit is an Oregon-based business “offering a full range of electrical services, including but not limited to residential, commercial and industrial services along with a comprehensive service department.” Plaintiff has used an ON ELECTRIC trademark since January 2015 in connection with its electrical services.

The defendant, OEG, allegedly began using an ON ELECTRIC trademark in connection with electrical services in August 2015. OEG apparently used to stand for “Oregon Electric Group” but it switched at some point to “On Electric Group.”

Both parties operate in Portland, Oregon and the surrounding areas. The complaint (below) alleges numerous instances of actual confusion among suppliers, advertisers, customers and others.

On Electric, LLC v. On Electric Group, Inc.

Court Case Number:  3:17-cv-01871-HZ
File Date: Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Plaintiff: On Electric, LLC
Plaintiff Counsel: David S. Aman of Aman Law, LLC
Defendant: On Electric Group, Inc.
Causes: Federal Unfair Competition, Common Law Trademark Infringement, Common Law Unfair Competition
Court: District of Oregon
Judge: Marco A. Hernandez


Dr. Seuss Enterprises accused by author of stealing Daisy-Head Mayzie



This rather lengthy, interesting, and unorthodox copyright complaint, filed by a pro se author, accuses Dr. Seuss Enterprises of stealing the character “Daisy-Head Mayzie” from his children’s story, “The Pains of Being Pure at Heart.”

Daisy-Head Mayzie is about a girl who suddenly sprouts a daisy from her head. Plaintiff’s story is about Lukus Loo, a boy(?) seemingly missing the top of his head, sometimes covering it with a crown, sometimes with three flowers. You be the judge after reading the Complaint (below). The Plaintiff’s itemized list of “plagiarized elements” begins on page 31 of the Complaint.

The Plaintiff has a long history with the Seuss estate, including several prior lawsuits, including most recently the Federal Court of Canada, which dismissed its suit on jurisdictional grounds in April 2017. The prior history, at least the Plaintiff’s side, is set forth in detail in the Complaint. The Dr. Seuss estate even had the Plaintiff arrested for extortion in 2003.

Quotes like these always make pro se lawsuits an interesting read:

In addition to the Complaint, the case also has some voluminous Exhibits which may merit further exploration by Dr. Seuss fans and historians.

Stay tuned for updates.

Steen v. Dr. Seuss Enterprises et al.

Court Case Number:  3:17-cv-01765-SB
File Date: Friday, November 3, 2017
Plaintiff: Charles Augustus Steen III
Plaintiff Counsel: Pro Se
Defendants: Dr. Seuss Enterprises L.P., Penguin Random House
Causes: Copyright Infringement,
Court: District of Oregon
Judge: Stacie F. Beckerman


Breach of Contract over Moisturizing Personal Lubricant Leads to Lawsuit


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The Plaintiff, a Eugene, Oregon-based manufacturer of natural and organic intimacy and feminine hygiene products, “brings this action because Defendants have conspired to sabotage [Plaintiff]’s distribution in Canada, and then to use [Plaintiff]’s proprietary, confidential business information and intellectual property to launch a brand of products nearly identical to those marketed and sold by [Plaintiff].”

Plaintiff sells moisturizing personal lubricant products under the brand names RESTORE, ALMOST NAKED and GUILTY PLEASURE.

The dispute arises from a contractual relationship gone bad. See the Complaint (below) for the details.

Good Clean Love, Inc. v. Aurium Pharma Inc. et al

Court Case Number: 6:17-cv-01712-JR
File Date: October 26, 2017
Plaintiff: Good Clean Love, Inc.
Plaintiff Counsel: David P. Cooper, Owen W. Dukelow, Desmond J. Kidney of Kolisch Hartwell, P.C.
Defendants: Aurium Pharma Inc., Rowland Global LLC, Edward Rowland
Causes: Trademark Infringement, False Designation of Origin, Breach of Contract, Intentional Interference with Economic Relations, Unlawful Business Practices, Unlawful Trade Practices, Breach of Good Faith and Fair Dealing, Breach of Fiduciary Duty, Professional Negligence
Court: District of Oregon
Judge: Jolie A. Russo


Unauthorized UtilitySport® Trailers Allegedly Sold in Oregon


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This lawsuit arises out of the manufacture, importation, offer for sale, sale, and distribution in the United States of unauthorized copies of UtilitySport® trailers by the Defendants.

The Plaintiff is a utility trailer kit manufacturer located in Grants Pass, Oregon. It owns federal trademark registrations for UtilityMate® and UtilitySport®.

In 2011, Plaintiff entered into a contract with the Defendants for the manufacture of trailers. The Defendants are now accused of manufacturing and selling trailers based on Plaintiff’s designs and using Plaintiff’s trademarks without permission and without compensating Plaintiff.

Trailers Intl LLC et al v. STC International (Shanghai) Co. Ltd. et al.

Court Case Number: 3:17-cv-01432-SI
File Date: Monday, September 11, 2017
Plaintiff: Trailers Intl LLC, Vincent L. Webb
Plaintiff Counsel: Stephen J. Joncus of Joncus Law LLC
Defendant: STC International (Shanghai) Co. Ltd., Rockford Commercial Warehouse, Inc., Power Equipment Direct Inc.
Cause: Copyright Infringement, Trademark Infringement, Unfair Competition, Breach of Contract
Court: District of Oregon
Judge: Michael H. Simon


Motion for Preliminary Injunction, Response Filed in Portland Heart Pizza Trademark Lawsuit


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Portland, Oregon’s Heart coffee roasters has filed a Motion for Preliminary Injunction in its trademark lawsuit against nearby Heart Pizza (read the original Complaint here).

We also now have a Response from Heart Pizza. There’s some good legal reading in the documents (below) but I’ve included a few highlights. I especially like Heart Pizza’s arguments around why keeping its name is in the public interest.

Public, now’s your chance to speak up…is it in your interest that Heart Pizza keep its name or should it pick a new one? Leave a comment below.

Motion for Preliminary Injunction:


Response to Motion for Preliminary Injunction:




Stay tuned for the Court’s ruling on the Plaintiff’s Motion for Preliminary Injunction.

Heart, LLC v. Heart Pizza, LLC

Court Case Number: 3:17-cv-01297-YY
File Date: Monday, August 21, 2017
Plaintiff: Heart, LLC
Plaintiff Counsel: Kenneth R. Davis II, Parna A. Mehrbani of LANE POWELL PC
Defendant: Heart Pizza, LLC, Micah Camden
Defendant Counsel: Steven T. Lovett, Nathan C. Brunette, Elliott J. Williams of STOEL RIVES LLP
Cause: Unfair Competition, Oregon Trademark Infringement, Common Law Trademark Infringement, Common Law Unfair Competition
Court: District of Oregon
Judge: Youlee Yim You

Motion for Preliminary Injunction:

Response to Motion for Preliminary Injunction:

Photographer sues Bend Real Estate Company for Copyright Infringement


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Here’s a single claim copyright infringement lawsuit involving a professional photographer and a Bend, Oregon real estate company that allegedly used one of his photographs on its website without permission.

Reed v. Alpine Real Estate LLC et al

Court Case Number: 6:17-cv-01396-TC
File Date: Wednesday, September 6, 2017
Plaintiff: Aaron C. Reed
Plaintiff Counsel:Mathew K. Higbee, Esq. of HIGBEE & ASSOCIATES
Defendant: Alpine Real Estate, LLC, Does 1-10
Cause: Copyright Infringement
Court: District of Oregon
Judge: Thomas M. Coffin


Photographer Files Copyright Lawsuit After Settlement Negotiations Break Down over Confidentiality Clause


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The Plaintiff in this copyright lawsuit is a professional photographer from Sammamish, Washington. He sells “limited edition luxury nature photography.” Pretty cool stuff, go check it out.

The Defendants are a real estate agency located in Portland, Oregon, who allegedly used one of Plaintiff’s photographs on their website without permission.

That’s all pretty standard stuff for a copyright lawsuit. We see those types of photography lawsuits regularly, since copyright infringement is strict liability, meaning liability doesn’t depend on actual negligence or intent to harm. Even the proposed settlement amount was reasonable by all accounts, just $1000 (statutory damages are $750 minimum). The more interesting part of this lawsuit may be the reason why the parties couldn’t amicably settle the dispute outside of court.

Settlement discussions apparently broke down over a confidentiality clause in the settlement agreement. Per the Complaint (below), “Defendants’ counsel did not wish to be personally bound by confidentiality ostensibly on account of an article that Defendants’ counsel intended to submit to California Lawyer magazine.” Defendants’ counsel also “apparently believed that amicable settlement was not prudent, as these types of cases ‘need more exposure.'”

Of course, we’re more than happy to give Oregon trademark and copyright cases tons of exposure here at the Oregon Intellectual Property Blog. Stay tuned for updates (and perhaps eventually a California Lawyer article with more detail).

Reed v. Ezelle Investment Properties Inc. et al.

Court Case Number: 3:17-cv-01364-BR
File Date: Thursday, August 31, 2017
Plaintiff: Aaron C. Reed
Plaintiff Counsel:Mathew K. Higbee, Esq. of HIGBEE & ASSOCIATES
Defendant: Ezelle Investment Properties Inc. d/b/a Ezelleinvestproperties.com, Glenn D. Ezelle Jr., Does 1-10
Cause: Copyright Infringement
Court: District of Oregon
Judge: Anna J. Brown


Umpqua Bank sued over unauthorized sale of IP Catalog


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The Complaint (below) in this intellectual lawsuit has complicated facts that you’ll want to read for yourself. The lawsuit was originally filed in Delaware in February 2017 but recently transferred to the District of Oregon.

Digital Funding, LLC v. Umpqua Bank

Court Case Number: 3:17-cv-01321-PK
File Date: Friday, August 25, 2017
Plaintiff: Digital Funding, LLC
Plaintiff Counsel: Richard M. Beck, Sally E. Veghte of Klehr Harrison Harvey Branzburg LLP
Defendant: Umpqua Bank
Cause: Tortious Interference with Contractual Relations, Conversion, Direct Copyright Infringement, Vicarious Copyright Infringement, Contributory Copyright Infringement, Vicarious Trademark Infringement, Contributory Trademark Infringement
Court: District of Oregon
Judge: Paul Papak


Photographer sues Grants Pass Restaurant for Copyright Infringement


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The Plaintiff in this copyright infringement lawsuit is a professional photographer who took two photographs of the Defendant’s business, the Taprock Northwest Grill in Grants Pass, Oregon.

The Complaint alleges that Defendant exceeded an oral license for use of one image (the Photographer was paid “$200.00 in cash and one gift card in an amount of $100.00″) and had no authority to use the second image. 

The dispute has been going on since July 2014 with apparently many failed attempts by Plaintiff to resolve the matter amicably. The Complaint alleges that Defendant has also filed a declaratory judgment action in Circuit Court, which Plaintiff intends to challenge with a Motion to Dismiss.

Mander v. Southern Oregon Elmer’s LLC

Court Case Number: 1:17-cv-01298-CL
File Date: Monday, August 21, 2017
Plaintiff: Jasmandeep Mander
Plaintiff Counsel: Mathew L. Higbee, Esq. of Higbee & Associates
Defendant: Southern Oregon Elmer’s, LLC., abn Taprock Northwest Grill
Cause: Copyright Infringement
Court: District of Oregon
Judge: Mark D. Clarke