Is registering a business name equivalent to a trademark registration?
Registering a business name is NOT considered the equivalent to a trademark registration. When applying for a business name to be an LLC or corporation, the secretary of state’s office will make sure there is no other business name being registered in the state. The Secretary of State's office does not communicate with the trademark office or files a trademark application for you. Thus, to make sure no one uses your name, you need to register a trademark. When registering a trademark, you must have a unique word, design, phrase or symbol (like a logo or slogan). This means that if you are granted a trademark, you are given exclusive rights to your mark and no one else is allowed to use it or anything that is confusingly similar.