In addition to reserving a name as an assumed name with the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State, a business may want to reserve trademarks. A trademark can consist of a name, symbol, or any combination used to identify a business or business product or service.
A business reserves a trademark by filing a trademark application with the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State. Drawings or pictures of the trademark should be included with the application where appropriate. There is a small filing fee for the application.
Any such application however, only reserves the trademark in the state of Minnesota. It is possible to register a national trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The USPTO has made significant gains in the last few years to make its website more user-friendly. It is possible for a business to file a trademark application without an attorney.
If it is important that a name, patent, or trademark be preserved then it is a good use of money to hire an attorney to make sure that the application has been filed correctly and that the business has the intellectual property protection it needs.
A business may also want to apply for a website domain name prior to or at the same time it applies to reserve a name, patent or trademark. In many cases, it is harder to reserve a domain name than it is a patent or trademark. Also, there are firms which monitor patent and trademark applications and immediately reserve domain names in the hope of selling the names to businesses that have obtained the patent or trademark.