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Acceptable Specimens for Goods

When filing a Statement of Use for a trademark application that was submitted under intent to use 1(b), an applicant must provide the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) with specimens to prove that he or she is actually using the applied-for trademark in connection with the goods listed in the application.

A trademark specimen for goods must show use of the trademark on the goods themselves, on containers or packaging for the goods, on labels or tags affixed to the goods, or on a display associated with the goods.

The following chart provides a list of specimens for goods that are acceptable by the USPTO.

Type of Good Acceptable Specimens Trademark Manual of Examining Procedure (TMEP) Reference

General Goods

Labels or tags affixed to the goods.

If the tabs are not shown physically attached to the goods, the label or tag must include matter that typically appears in connection with that type of good, such as:


  • net weight and volume information;
  • UPC codes; or
  • ingredient lists.

Stampings applied to the goods.

Containers that are normal for the particular goods as they move in trade, including, for example:


  • a gasoline pump, for gasoline; or
  • a truck, for wholesale butchered meat.


However, a mark on bags for carrying goods purchased in a store typically identifies the store, not the goods.

Displays associated with the goods, so long as they are point-of-sale in nature and show use of the mark directly associated with the goods, for example:


  • window displays;
  • banners;
  • menus, for a branded menu food item
  • copies of catalog or web page printouts, but only if they include a picture or description of the goods, the mark in association with the goods, and ordering information;
  • an infomercial showing the mark in association with goods and ordering information; and
  • a coupon dispensed in the store where the goods are located and offered for sale.

Printed matter included with the goods but only if it functions as a part of the goods themselves.

Shipping labels affixed to the goods or containers for the goods, but only if they show the trademark, and not merely a trade name.

Bulk Goods, Such as Grain, Milk, or Chemicals (where standard mark placement is impracticable)

If they show use of the mark for the goods:


  • Invoices.
  • Bills of lading.
  • Shipping documents showing trademark.

Computer Programs

A screenshot displaying the identifying trademark. The USPTO will accept "beta" versions if they are used in commerce.

Downloadable Computer Software, Movies, Audio, and Related Goods

The web page providing the download if it:


  • creates an association between the mark and the downloadable goods; and
  • provides sufficient information to allow the user to download or purchase the software from the website.


A frame or frames of the movie or video displaying the mark.

NOT Acceptable Specimens for Goods

The following list of specimens for goods are NOT accepted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). For more information on the types of specimens the USPTO does not accept, see TMEP § 904.04.


  • Mockups of how the mark may be displayed, such as an artist’s rendering, printer’s proof, or digital image.
  • A copy of the drawing/logo from the application.
  • Advertisements. Exception: they may be acceptable if they include a photograph of the goods or packaging for the goods bearing the mark.
  • Package inserts.
  • Internal business documents, such as invoices, bills, warranties, and business stationery.
  • A display of the mark on an internet crowdfunding page for goods not bearing the mark.
  • Flyers and brochures without evidence of point-of-sale presentation.

Have any questions about specimens for goods?

If you have any questions about specimens for goods, or you would like to work with a skilled and experienced U.S. licensed attorney who can help you pick acceptable specimens, contact us for your free consultation. We can be reached at 1 800-651-7301, via email at info@trademarkattorneyslosangeles.com, or through our contact form below.

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