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Let’s Work Together

Choose your own adventure.
Be sure to scroll down for more info! This page is long on purpose — if you’ve got any questions, you can probably find your answers here!

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The Fine Print

OUR INDIE LAW GUARANTEES

PRO GUARANTEE (FOR TM PRO): At no extra cost to you, we will respond to ALL trademark office concerns throughout the application process. AND if we’re not successful in getting your trademark registered, your next one is 100% on us (including filing fees).

MAX GUARANTEE (FOR TM MAX): 100% refund if your trademark is not approved

By signing up, you agree to the terms and guidelines below.

TRADEMARK PACKAGE TERMS OF SERVICE

The following outlines the terms under which you and Indie Law, LLC (“Indie Law”) agree to work together and will take effect upon payment, after which will you be bound by this agreement (“the Agreement”).

1.0 Indie Law’s obligations

1.1 CLIENT

By signing up for one of the packages above, Indie Law will have been engaged to provide legal services to you as the owner of your business (“You”). Representation of any other entity or individual requires a separate agreement.

1.2 SCOPE OF REPRESENTATION

Indie Law will provide legal services reasonably required to represent You as part of the package outlined above, which includes the features described in this Agreement.

Unless there's an agreement to the contrary in writing, Indie Law does not represent You/your business in a general capacity. Indie Law's trademark packages provide you representation through the application process. Unless Indie Law expressly agrees otherwise, Indie Law's representation of You does not extend to communicating with other parties other than the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

1.3 COMMUNICATION

Indie Law will take reasonable steps to keep You informed of the progress of your matter and to respond to Your inquiries in a timely manner during representation.

2.0 Client’s obligations

2.1 COOPERATION

You agree to cooperate with Indie Law by providing timely, accurate and complete information requested by Indie Law and by reasonably considering Indie Law’s advice and instruction.

2.2 COMMUNICATION

You will communicate any questions or concerns regarding the matter or Indie Law’s representation forthrightly as they arise.

In the event Indie Law and You differ on the course of action to be taken during the representation, You and Indie Law will discuss such issues candidly. The ultimate decision regarding the course of action rests with Indie Law. Indie Law may withdraw from representation if, in Indie Law’s view, continuing representation would be ineffective, unlawful or unethical.

2.3 PAYMENT

You will pay legal fees and expenses in a timely manner as provided in this Agreement.

2.4 GENERAL TERMS

You understand and agree to Indie Law’s General Terms of Engagement and Office Procedures.

3.0 Fees and expenses

3.1 FEES

You have agreed to a flat fee listed above for Indie Law’s representation. This amount will be due promptly after the signing of this agreement or according to a payment plan if selected. If, after reviewing the findings from the trademark search, you do not wish to move forward with the application, then you will receive a refund minus the cost of the search.

Joseph Vitale will have primary responsibility for work on Your case and may engage contractors to assist with Your work upon Your prior approval and at agreed billing rates. When drafts of documents are sent to You for Your review, You will be responsible for responding to Indie Law within 7 (seven) days after receipt of that draft.

3.2 EXPENSES

You will be billed for expenses incurred in connection with the legal services, subject to Your prior approval. These charges may include postage, delivery fees, or other fees associated with services performed on Your behalf. Indie Law may pay minor expenses and send You an invoice with the charges. For any substantial expenses, you agree to pay the fees and expenses directly, and you authorize Indie Law to have those expenses billed directly to You.

3.3 ADVANCE PAYMENT

Indie Law will not require advance payment for this matter. Should any advance payments be made, however, such advance payments will be handled according to the section below.

3.4 TRUST ACCOUNT

If advance payments are made, the advance payment, as well as any future advances, is held in a trust account for You, and it will be used to pay the fees and/or expenses incurred.

You authorize Indie Law to use the funds held in trust for You to pay the fees and other charges as they are incurred. Payments from the fund will be made upon Indie Law providing You with a statement showing billed charges. The advance payment is not an estimate of total fees and costs, but merely an advance for security.

4.0 Disclaimer and termination

4.1 DISCLAIMER OF GUARANTEE AND ESTIMATES

Nothing in this agreement and nothing in Indie Law’s statements to You will be construed as a promise or guarantee about the outcome of the matter. Indie Law cannot make any such promises or guarantees, and any statements or other comments about the outcome of a matter are expressions of opinion only. Any estimate of fees given by Indie Law is not a guarantee, as actual fees may vary from estimates provided at the beginning of a matter. Any fees beyond the estimated fees will be discussed with You in advance.

4.2 TERMINATION OF SERVICES

You have the right to terminate Indie Law’s representation at any time by notifying Indie Law in writing. Indie Law will have the right to withdraw from representing You at any time with Your consent, or for good cause without Your consent; for example, if You do not honor the terms of this letter, if You fail or refuse to cooperate with Indie Law, to follow Indie Law’s advice on a material matter, or if Indie Law becomes aware of any fact or circumstance that would, in Indie Law’s opinion, render continuing representation ineffective, unlawful or unethical. In the event services are terminated by either of us, You agree to pay the reasonable fees for professional services performed to the date of termination or in connection with an orderly transition, including costs and expenses.

5.0 General provisions

This Agreement sets forth the entire understanding of the parties. Any amendments must be in writing and signed by both parties. This Agreement will be construed under Illinois law. If any part of this Agreement is held invalid, illegal, or unenforceable, all remaining portions of this Agreement will remain binding and construed so as to effectuate the original intent and purpose of this Agreement.

INDIE LAW OFFICE PROCEDURES – THE FINE PRINT

Attorney-client relationship and privilege. Indie Law’s duty is to act in your best interests and to maintain the confidentiality of privileged communications and other privileged information shared with you. Accordingly, Indie Law will not share information about your matters with anyone else without your express permission. With your prior permission only, Indie Law may publicly identify you as a client of the firm with Indie Law’s other clients, but will not divulge privileged information about the representation. If our representation includes filing documents with government agencies, such as the Secretary of State, Department of Labor or Division of Unemployment Security, information about you and the attorney-client relationship may become a public record. We will discuss with you in advance the implications of any such filings.

Conflicts. It is possible that a conflict or potential conflict of interest may arise related to our engagement with you. In that event, we will notify you and discuss whether Indie Law needs a waiver of such conflict from you and another client in order to continue with the representation, or whether Indie Law must withdraw from representation of both clients due to our ethical obligations to each of you.

Change of address or contact information. To represent you effectively, it is essential that we be able to contact you in a timely manner. You agree to keep your contact information current with us during our representation.

Email correspondence. Indie Law routinely sends and receives information via email. The internet does not provide a totally secure method of communication, and email may be copied and held by any computer through which it passes. Persons not participating in the communication may intercept emails, and emails stored on computers may be accessed by unauthorized parties. If you would prefer that we not communicate with you via email or would like to share files through an encrypted, password-protected system, please let us know at any time.

Document retention and paperless office. Some materials related to our representation belong to Indie Law (e.g. administrative records, time and expense reports, personnel materials, and credit and accounting records) and will be handled in accordance with our document retention policy. Other materials (i.e. documents provided to Indie Law by you and the final version of documents that we have created for you) are considered client files and belong to you. It is our policy to maintain records in electronic form whenever possible. At the conclusion of our representation, we will have the option of either (a) providing you with an electronic copy of your files along with any physical files we may have and deleting the electronic files in our records or (b) retaining your file for ten (10) years or such longer period as required by statute or Indie Law’s document retention policy. Original documents will be provided to you for safe keeping. At any time that you request it in writing, we will return your file to you or any other person designated by you. If, at your request, we retain your client files beyond the conclusion of our representation or their normal period of retention, such long-term storage will be at your cost. If you have not requested that we return your file or made arrangements for long-term storage, we may delete, destroy or otherwise dispose of your client files at the conclusion of our representation or after the retention period. For electronic files, Indie Law maintains on-site and secure, encrypted, off-site backup data storage.

Disclaimer of tax advice. In accordance with Treasury Department Circular 230 and requirements imposed by the Internal Revenue Service, you are notified that any opinion or other legal counsel provided to you by Indie Law is not offered as tax advice. In the event that it is deemed to be tax advice, such tax advice is not provided to avoid penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or to promote, market, or recommend any information as tax advice to another party.

Indie Law appreciates the opportunity to represent You. If you have any questions about any aspect of our work for You or billing at any time, please let us know.

GUIDELINES AND EXPECTATIONS

Please note our guidelines and expectations with respect to Indie Law’s trademark services.

#1: Our Comprehensive Search Results and Analysis Report

After we’ve received certain information from you about your trademark, we will conduct a comprehensive search of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) database, as well as a general online search. We will include those findings in a report to you. That report will advise you of any risks or potential barriers that we think you may face with a trademark registration application.

#2: Our Indie Law Guarantee

At no extra cost to you, Indie Law will respond to ALL trademark office concerns throughout the application process. AND if we’re not successful in getting your trademark registered, your next one is 100% on us (including filing fees).

Despite our best efforts, however, Indie Law cannot guarantee that your trademark application will be accepted by the USPTO. There is always a possibility that the USPTO will refuse the application based on grounds that are mentioned or not in our search results letter. No refunds will be given for trademark applications that are refused.

#3: Preparing a Solid Application Can Take Time

Our goal is to submit your trademark application within two weeks of signing up with Indie Law (or, if you have multiple trademark application requests, within 15 days of our start date on any subsequent applications). That said, there is a lot of attention that goes into preparing your application. We want to do everything we can to make the application process relatively quick and seamless so that you have a powerful registration in place that offers maximum protection for your trademark.

In order to get your application(s) in top-notch shape, it may require a series of back and forth between you and our team to make sure we are on the same page and that we have the information we need.

#4: Keeping You Posted with Status Updates

Once we submit your application, we will keep you posted as the application works its way through the trademark office. Whenever there’s a significant update to your application, even if no action is required on your end, we’ll be sure to let you know.

#5: Responding to Office Actions

It is common for trademark applications to receive some sort of “office action,” or notice from the USPTO requiring a response, before your trademark can be registered with the USPTO.

Many office actions can be resolved easily. To the extent that your application receives a “non-substantial” office action, Indie Law will respond to them on your behalf under your plan — at no extra cost to you.

Sometimes, office actions are received that would require a substantial amount of time and work to respond. In most cases, these substantial office actions refuse your application and allow for a response to overcome the refusal. With our Indie Law Guarantee, any response to such a “substantial” office action is also covered in your plan. 

If your application does receive a substantial office action, we will send you a letter summarizing what that office action says and what your options are generally. We will also provide a letter of opinion, in which we'll perform a closer examination of the office action and your application. We'll advise you on whether or not we think a response would be successful and what arguments would be included in such a response.

#6: Registration Followup

If your trademark application is successful and your trademark becomes registered (yay!), we will notify you promptly. We have a packet of information, next steps, and other goodies so that you can confidently use and protect your registered trademark.

#7: Registration Monitoring

Once you have a trademark registration in place, Indie Law can monitor that trademark on a monthly basis and let you know of any potential infringers or similar trademarks that have been applied for.

WHy Indie Law?

Don't just take our word for it.
Watch what people have to say about their experience with us.

Why not handle trademarks yourself?

Tracy came to us after talking with another lawyer who recommended our services. She knew she had a great brand worth protecting, so she wanted it done right with a team she could trust. Here's what Tracy had to say about working with us instead of going through the process herself.

Not sure if NOW is the time to trademark?

Meet Ashley. Ashley runs a thriving, multiple-six figure company, and she waited to take care of trademarks because that's what her trusted advisors and coaches recommended. But after getting blindsided by a cease and desist letter and being forced to rebrand, she came to Indie Law for help. Here's what Ashley has to say about her biggest lessons learned.

Why Indie Law over other law firms & legal options?

Great question. Here's our friend Harlan Shillinger to share his thoughts. Harlan is a legal marketing expert, and he knows LOTS of attorneys and law firms. In this video, Harlan shares his thoughts about what made working with Indie Law special and why he recommends us over other law firms.

FROM OUR CLIENTS

We know our stuff. We’re great at what we do.
And gosh darn it, people like us.
Joey is the best! Having someone to consult for legal things has made such a difference.
Bianca Sansosti

Founder, Bianca Sansosti Artistry

I’ve always been incredibly impressed with Joey’s professionalism. His team is fantastic!

Rianna Hill

CEO & Founder, Pancake Digital Solutions®

Love Joey!! For legal services, there’s no one I’d recommend more highly!

Dannie Fountain

Founder & Marketing Director, DNE MKTG

Joey is like the sugar in cornbread. He makes all things legal so easy to swallow and sweet.
Kellie Daab

Founder, Wedding Industry Education

This kind of legal support is something every small business needs!

Ashley Jankowski

Founder, The Type Set Co.®

Joey isn’t your average attorney. He makes the legal parts of  business approachable and fun! 

Ashley Cox

Owner & HR Consultant, Sprout HR

How long does this take?

That, my friend, is an excellent question! It surprises many business owners to learn that the trademark process will take 6 months minimum.

To give you a better idea of why this takes so long, here’s a quick summary.

Week 1 - Analyze

First, we do a lot of research to see if there may be issues or risks with your application.

Not-so-fun fact: over 50% of trademark applications get refused. That’s why working with an experienced trademark attorney is so important.

Week 2 - Apply

Within 2 weeks of signing up with Indie Law, we’ll have your application completed and submitted to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, aka the USPTO.

Month 3 - Processed

Because half a million of trademarks are filed each year, it generally takes 3 months for the USPTO to start reviewing your application. From there, your application needs to go through different stages of review before it will be successful. We’ll keep you posted throughout this process.

After 6 Months - Registered

On average, it takes 6-10 months for a trademark to become registered. Depending on various issues, it could take longer or get rejected entirely.

When we receive news of your registration (wahoo!), our team celebrates with you! You can expect some sweet gifts from us!

Time to get legit

Hi! I’m Joey, the founding attorney at Indie Law.

My team and I (including my dog, Mr. Feeny) are passionate about helping thriving entrepreneurs like you get clarity and peace of mind on the legal side you can continue to level up your business.

Still got questions?
WE’VE GOT ANSWERS.

What should I protect first?

We generally recommend that you protect your brand elements in this order.

#1 | BUSINESS NAME (WORDS ONLY)

Your business name is likely your most valuable trademark. It’s smart to get that protected first!

#2 | FLAGSHIP PRODUCT OR SERVICE

Do you have a popular product line? An online program? A podcast? Those are protectable as trademarks as well.

#3 | SLOGAN, CATCHPHRASE, MOTTO, OR MISSION STATEMENT

You will eventually want to protect these. You want to be proactive about these trademarks so that another business doesn’t claim these in the future and force you to rebrand.

#4 | STYLIZED NAMES + LOGOS

Most trademark applications protect the “words only” of the trademark. But if your branding has a particular stylizing or look to it, that can be protected as well.

#5 | YOUR SOMEDAY/MAYBE STUFF

Are you considering a rebrand, a name for a new business, or a slogan you want to start using? It’s possible to apply for a trademark before you even start using it. In fact, this is what our biggest clients do so that they can lock in trademark protections before they spend time or money committing to the brand.

What does a federal registration give me that I don’t already have?

Only with a U.S. registered trademark do you have evidence of nationwide exclusive rights to your trademark. And without that, you’re taking a huge risk that someone else can claim a registration and force you to rebrand.

How long will this take?

When you sign up, we will get right to work for you and have your application submitted in 1-2 weeks. After we apply, however, it could take 6-12 months or longer to work its way through the US trademark office.

When can I start using the TM or ® symbols?

You can start using the little TM symbol now — even without filing for anything. (Tip: Use a little SM symbol if you sell a service instead of a product). You can only use the ® once you have a registered trademark.

What if I decide not to apply after seeing the search results?

If you review our report and decide not to apply, we’ll issue a full refund minus the cost of our search ($1075).

What if my application gets rejected?

If your first application is rejected AND we’re not successful in getting your trademark registered, your next one is 100% on us (including filing fees).

What happens after my application is accepted?

First we celebrate. Then we’ll mail you the registration certificate, send you helpful legal documents, and advise  on next steps.

Are filing fees included?

Applying for a trademark registration requires a filing fee per class. Filing fees are not included in the initial trademark package. If your trademark application only requires one class, we will collect the fee before submitting the application. If your trademark requires multiple classes, we will collect the first class’ fee before submitting the application. Then, after the trademark office reviews your application and allows us to add the additional classes, we will collect the fee for any additional class you opt to include.

What are the advantages of an “intent to use” application?

It’s critical to apply for your trademarks ASAP to be “first in line” with the trademark office. If you’re not yet using the trademark in commerce, we can apply for an “intent to use” application. Note that intent to use applications require an additional $100 filing fee per class — but that small extra fee is usually worth it.

What if I’m outside the United States?

A U.S. trademark registration offers strong, nationwide exclusive protections. But those exclusive rights do not extend beyond the United States. Still, if your business is based outside the United States, we can still help! As long as you are selling to customers in the United States, you are able to seek a U.S. trademark registration.

Can I enforce my trademark rights when my application is pending?

It depends on the situation, but we generally recommend that you wait to enforce your trademark rights until you have secured the registration.

Otherwise, there’s a chance that you may “tip off” the other brand into challenging your application or filing their own application.

Effectively enforcing your trademark rights will require less time, effort, and money once you have the registration secured.