QUESTION: Does my LLC protect me from someone with a federally registered trademark? Just got a cease and desist letter from a company saying our LLC name is a direct violation of their client’s federally registered trademark. Our LLC (KBX PHX) was formed in May of 2019 in Arizona. They are in California, and their trademark (KBX Fitness) was “published for opposition” August 20, 2019
ANSWER: No, the mere fact of have an LLC name registered with your state’s Secretary of State does not protect you against infringement. Among other things, whether infringement exists depends on who was the first user, not who first filed a trademark application or who first registered an LLC/corporation. The first user has “prior” rights over the subsequent user.