US trademark office isn’t saying why its digital ID verification plan has stalled
A postponement in the requirement that U.S. trademark applicants verify their identities remains in place without an explanation or a date for a new deadline.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in January, said late last year that domestic and international applicants faced an April 9, 2022, deadline to use a one-time digital identification verification service provided by ID.me or submit notarized paper-ID documents.
It was an integrity-supporting program for the government office.
The electronic ID verification services are the Trademark Electronic Application System, or TEAS, and TEAS international, or TEASi. They have been operating since at least 2019. It is only the deadline for mandatory ID verification that has changed.
In March, trademark officials said, “feedback on our online digital identity verification option” prompted them to delay the deadline for mandatory verification. “A new effective date will be announced at the appropriate time with reasonable advance notice.”
Officials say 20,000 people have voluntarily verified their identity, though they have not said how many chose which option.
The minimum ID requirement for filing through the TEAS services has been to set up an account with the trademark office.
Applicants and trademark holders who are not represented by an attorney have to verify their identity as do U.S.-licensed attorneys, in-house or otherwise, if they are filing for a trademark. This also is true of Canadian attorneys and agents.
World Trademark Review, a trade publication owned by Law Business Research, says that companies in the United States and Pakistan are scamming applicants, selling fraudulent services.
It bears noting that recent reports chronicle the trouble ID.me has had in the last two years trying to keep up with new business. The company won a contract processing emergency federal aid to residents during the first period of the Covid pandemic.