37 CFR § 2.17 - Recognition for representation.

§ 2.17 Recognition for representation.

(a) Authority to practice in trademark cases. Only an individual qualified to practice under § 11.14 of this chapter may represent an applicant, registrant, or party to a proceeding before the Office in a trademark case.

(b)

(1) Recognition of practitioner as representative. To be recognized as a representative in a trademark case, a practitioner qualified under § 11.14 of this chapter may:

(i) File a power of attorney that meets the requirements of paragraph (c) of this section;

(ii) Sign a document on behalf of an applicant, registrant, or party to a proceeding who is not already represented by a practitioner qualified under § 11.14 of this chapter from a different firm; or

(iii) Appear by being identified as the representative in a document submitted to the Office on behalf of an applicant, registrant, or party to a proceeding who is not already represented by a practitioner qualified under § 11.14 of this chapter from a different firm.

(2) Authorization to represent. When a practitioner qualified under § 11.14 of this chapter signs a document or appears pursuant to paragraph (b) of this section, his or her signature or appearance shall constitute a representation to the Office that he or she is authorized to represent the person or entity on whose behalf he or she acts. The Office may require further proof of authority to act in a representative capacity.

(3) Bar information required. A practitioner qualified under § 11.14(a) of this chapter will be required to provide the name of a State, as defined in § 11.1 of this chapter, in which he or she is an active member in good standing, the date of admission to the bar of the named State, and the bar license number, if one is issued by the named State. The practitioner may be required to provide evidence that he or she is an active member in good standing of the bar of the specified State.

(c) Requirements for power of attorney. A power of attorney must:

(1) Designate by name at least one practitioner meeting the requirements of § 11.14 of this chapter; and

(2) Be signed by the individual applicant, registrant, or party to a proceeding pending before the Office, or by someone with legal authority to bind the applicant, registrant, or party (e.g., a corporate officer or general partner of a partnership). In the case of joint applicants or joint registrants, all must sign. Once the applicant, registrant, or party has designated a practitioner(s) qualified to practice under § 11.14 of this chapter, that practitioner may sign an associate power of attorney appointing another qualified practitioner(s) as an additional person(s) authorized to represent the applicant, registrant, or party. If the applicant, registrant, or party revokes the original power of attorney (§ 2.19(a)), the revocation discharges any associate power signed by the practitioner whose power has been revoked. If the practitioner who signed an associate power withdraws (§ 2.19(b)), the withdrawal discharges any associate power signed by the withdrawing practitioner upon acceptance of the request for withdrawal by the Office.

(d) Power of attorney relating to multiple applications or registrations. The owner of an application or registration may appoint a practitioner(s) qualified to practice under § 11.14 of this chapter to represent the owner for all existing applications or registrations that have the identical owner name.

(e) Foreign attorneys and agents. Recognition to practice before the Office in trademark matters is governed by § 11.14(c) of this chapter.

(f) Non-lawyers. A non-lawyer may not act as a representative except in the limited circumstances set forth in § 11.14(b) of this chapter. Before any non-lawyer who meets the requirements of § 11.14(b) of this chapter may take action of any kind with respect to an application, registration or proceeding, a written authorization must be filed, signed by the applicant, registrant, or party to the proceeding, or by someone with legal authority to bind the applicant, registrant, or party (e.g., a corporate officer or general partner of a partnership).

(g) Duration of recognition.

(1) The Office considers recognition as to a pending application to end when the mark registers, when ownership changes, or when the application is abandoned.

(2) The Office considers recognition obtained after registration to end when the mark is cancelled or expired, or when ownership changes. If a practitioner was recognized as the representative in connection with an affidavit under section 8, 12(c), 15, or 71 of the Act, renewal application under section 9 of the Act, or request for amendment or correction under section 7 of the Act, recognition is deemed to end upon acceptance or final rejection of the filing.

[84 FR 31510, July 2, 2019, as amended at 84 FR 37093, July 31, 2019]