Can trademarks include swearwords?

Photo of Igor Demcak

Written by Igor Demcak

Founder & Trademark Attorney

If you file a trademark application including a swear word, it will very likely be refused by the IP office. Any vulgarity, profanity, or imagery viewed as racist or offensive is unlikely to be officially trademarked.

In some jurisdictions, there might be an issue with trademark signs promoting the recreational use of drugs. Moreover, if your trademark includes shocking or scandalous language, the odds are your application will be refused.

Establishing what can and cannot be trademarked is a bit more complex, as every jurisdiction examines trademarks differently. What is allowed in one jurisdiction might not be allowed in another.

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