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The term "trademark" includes any word, name, symbol or device, or any combination thereof, used by a person to distinguish his or her goods.

Trademarks may not be registered if they possess any of the design characteristics described in 15 USC 1052, such as marks that include scandalous or immoral matter and those that contain the insignia of any state, country or municipality.

Reproduction, counterfeiting and imitation of a registered trademark in connection with the sale or advertisement of any goods or services is forbidden and may lead to civil action (15 USC 1114).

Registered trademarks must display an indication of registration, such as the ® symbol, or no damages or profits may be recovered (15 USC 1111). In some cases, however, a non-registered trademark, referred to as a "famous mark," may have some protections. Refer to 15 USC 1125 for more information.

The United States Patent and Trademark Office accepts applications through its Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS). Applicants must submit personal information, specifics of the trademark and a fee.

Use of a registered trademark may result in the payment of damages, fees and profits to the owner (15 USC 1117).

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