An “intent to use” trademark application must be based on a “bona fide” intention to use the trademark in commerce in the future as the signifying source of specific goods, products and/or services that will be offered. This means that proof of “actual use” on products or goods shipped or sold in interstate commerce, or services provided in interstate commerce,  is no longer necessary prior to filing a federal trademark application.

After an intent to use application is filed, it will then be processed in much the same way as an actual use application. That is, if the proposed mark is found not to be generic, descriptive or deceptive, and there are no existing trademark conflicts that may bar registration, the trademark will then qualify for registration. It will then be published for any opposition purposes, and if no opposition is found, the USPTO will issue a notice of allowance for the applicant to use the mark. This notice will begin a six month period in which the applicant must file a declaration of actual use of the trademark. That is, the applicant must prove that they are selling their goods or services in commerce to the public at large. There is the potential that this six month period may be extended upon a showing of good faith that the applicant still intends to use the trademark in commerce but needs more time to develop or establish the product, good or service.

Additionally, once an intent to use application is filed, this will establish constructive use priority rights of your mark nationwide. Constructive use priority rights allows you to immediately establish certain trademark rights on the date the application is filed.