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Statutes Text

Article - Business Regulation


    (a)    If a person uses a mark in the State, the person may register the mark in accordance with this subtitle.

    (b)    A person may not register a mark that:

        (1)    is deceptive, immoral, or scandalous;

        (2)    may disparage, falsely suggest a connection with, or bring into contempt or disrepute:

            (i)    a belief;

            (ii)    an individual, living or dead;

            (iii)    an institution; or

            (iv)    a national symbol;

        (3)    is, simulates, or includes a coat of arms, flag, or other insignia of a government;

        (4)    is or includes the name, portrait, or signature of a living individual, except with the written consent of the individual; or

        (5)    is likely, when applied to the goods or services of the person, to confuse or deceive because the mark resembles:

            (i)    another mark registered in the State; or

            (ii)    a mark or trade name that another person has used in the State and has not abandoned.

    (c)    (1)    Unless the mark has become distinctive of the person’s goods or services, a person may not register a mark that:

            (i)    only describes or deceptively misdescribes goods or services;

            (ii)    primarily describes or deceptively misdescribes the geographic origin of goods or services; or

            (iii)    is primarily merely a surname.

        (2)    As evidence that a mark has become distinctive of the goods or services of a person, the Secretary of State may accept proof that the person has used the mark as a mark in the State or elsewhere continuously for at least 5 years immediately before the day on which the person applies for registration.

    (d)    A person may not register a trade name that is not a mark.