One challenge you likely face as an Amazon seller is the wait to access Amazon’s brand protection features. Through my years of experience with Amazon and exploring and using the various programs, I’ve learned a great deal about what these can do for you and how to employ them.
In this article, I aim to expand on one of these programs – the Amazon Intellectual Property Accelerator – particularly its benefits and how to navigate it.
What Is an Amazon Intellectual Property Accelerator?
The Amazon IP Accelerator is a program designed to assist businesses through the trademark acquisition process, facilitating quicker access to Amazon’s brand protection features. The Lanham Act in the USA establishes the criteria for trademark registration, the rights of trademark owners, and the remedies available for infringement.
This initiative simplifies the trademark registration process by connecting businesses with a carefully selected network of reputable law firms that provide high-quality trademark registration services at competitive rates. Alternatively, you could work with a law firm of your choice to acquire a trademark.
Benefits of the Amazon IP Accelerator
IP Accelerator is a must-have resource if you’re looking to establish and protect your intellectual property rights as you sell on Amazon. Aside from assisting with trademark application, some other benefits of this program include:
Access to Trusted Service Providers
The IP Accelerator program participants gain access to a network of IP law firms strictly vetted by Amazon. This ensures you can receive quality legal advice and assistance from start to finish during your trademark registration process.
However, brands will have to broker a separate deal with the law firm for services outside trademark registration. You are free to pick any law firm in this regard. Trademark protection is governed by federal law in the United States, primarily the Lanham Act (15 U.S.C. § 1051 et seq.).
Faster Registration Process
The Accelerator program is designed to streamline the trademark application process. This can be particularly beneficial for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that may not have the resources or legal expertise to navigate the lengthy process effectively.
Enrollment in the Amazon Brand Registry
After filing a trademark application through one of Amazon’s IP Accelerator legal firms, Amazon would invite you to enroll in the Brand Registry. This invite comes in before you receive your trademark, meaning you don’t have to wait until the trademark arrives before you can start protecting and building your brand using Brand Registry.
Cheaper Trademark Registration
The program offers a cost-effective way for businesses, especially smaller ones, to apply for a trademark. The IP law firms Amazon chose have agreed to offer their trademark application services to Amazon businesses at a competitive, pre-negotiated rate. This makes it easier for you to protect your IP without incurring excessive legal costs.
How Much Does the Amazon IP Accelerator Cost?
The IP Accelerator service is free. You don’t have to pay fees to connect to any of Amazon’s approved law firms. However, while the program may not have a fee, you must still pay the law firm to file your trademark. You’ll also have to pay the government during the application process.
Here is a breakdown of the maximum service fees the firms will charge:
- $500 for a high-level search of Trademark Office records for relevant pending applications or registrations
- $1800 for an in-depth brand review that includes Trademark Office records and unregistered uses
- $600 for filing a U.S. trademark application
- $275 in government fees per class for filing
How Can Brands Apply for the Amazon IP Accelerator?
The application process for IP Accelerator is a very easy one. Follow these steps to get started:
- Go to the Amazon IP Accelerator website
- Click on Get Started
- You’ll be asked the following questions:
- What country are you in?
- Where do you want to sell?
- What service do you need help with? The answer to this should be IP Accelerator.
- After answering the questions, a list of law firms will be provided for you to choose from
- Click on any law firm to read reviews from other Amazon sellers who have used the firm. When you find one you’re satisfied with, you can contact them yourself.
What Happens if a Trademark Application Is Denied?
Trademark applications can be denied for various reasons, including:
- Issues with the application itself
- Likelihood of confusion with existing trademarks
- Insufficient evidence of use
- Failure to meet legal requirements
If your trademark application submitted through the Amazon IP Accelerator is denied, your access to the Amazon Brand Registry will be canceled. However, the risks of this happening are pretty low because the legal firms handling your case are well-qualified experts.
As a seller, you must ensure that your trademarks meet the statutory requirements, such as distinctiveness and non-generic characteristics. You should also be mindful of potential infringement issues, as the Amazon IP Accelerator does not guarantee against challenges from other trademark holders.
Is the Amazon Accelerator Worth It?
Yes, IP Accelerator is often considered worthwhile for businesses seeking easier and less expensive trademark registration and access to brand protection and building tools. This program benefits small to medium-sized businesses, offering marketing, product development, and brand-building support.
How Does Amazon Select Their IP Accelerator Law Firms?
Amazon selects law firms for its Accelerator program based on their expertise in intellectual property law, especially in trademark registration and enforcement. The chosen firms typically have a proven track record of assisting businesses with trademark-related matters.
They also evaluate the firms’ experience, credentials, and commitment to quality customer service to ensure that participants receive reliable legal support.
How Many Countries Is the IP Accelerator Available On?
The Accelerator program is currently available to Amazon sellers anywhere in the world. However, the law firms on Amazon’s list are only based in Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Egypt, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and the United States.
Enrolling in the Brand Registry is one of the best ways to grow your brand and boost your sales on Amazon. This, however, is impossible without a trademark to your name. Amazon IP Accelerator assists you in getting your trademarks at less cost and accessing the Brand Registry quickly.