Lease to Own?? - Posted by JoeKaiser

Posted by Bob (Md) on February 26, 2001 at 22:14:13:

I don’t think so. We clearly registered that particular sign in 1972, as the Texas Lone Eagle. I think you’re gonna owe us a TON of back royalties, dude! We have an active litigation staff working the Los Angeles basin, already. I’ll point them your way.


Lease to Own?? - Posted by JoeKaiser

Posted by JoeKaiser on February 26, 2001 at 20:52:51:

Received an “interesting” call today from a gal who probably reads this board and who has a local investment company in my area.

She advises me that her firm has “trademarked” the term, “lease to own,” and further, advises me that I must immediately desist from using the term in my advertising and on my website.

“Are you kidding me?”

No, apparently.

We’re awaiting a letter from her attorney now, and she’s quite eager to fax me a copy of the trademark documentation.

Anyone know if it’s possible to trademark a term that has been in the public lexicon for decades?


McDonalds?? - Posted by mike

Posted by mike on February 27, 2001 at 23:50:02:

Does this mean anyone named “McDonald” cannot advertise Thanksgiving dinner at “McDonalds”?..mmmm

Just a thought…

Legalwiz? - Posted by William bronchick

Posted by William bronchick on February 27, 2001 at 16:36:17:

Legalwiz is my registered trademark. However it applies only to legal consulting. It costs $400 to register your trademark in each category. Thus, just because someone has Lease-to-Own registered as a TM, it doesn’t mean your USE of it infringes on their trademark. Ask the attorney for a copy of the registry and the categories to which it applies.

Re: Lease to Own?? - Posted by J.P. Vaughan

Posted by J.P. Vaughan on February 27, 2001 at 09:54:14:

Hi Joe,

Even if this person somehow succeeded in registering
the term “lease to own,” that does not mean she has
"exclusive" rights to the term. For a good discussion
of trademark law, go to:

I wouldn’t worry about it…


Re: WHY DON’T YOU ? THE DOT IN .com ALSO? - Posted by Rob

Posted by Rob on February 26, 2001 at 22:18:02:

I think you should have done a little more research on trade marks before you filed for that one.

No… She Cannot! - Posted by Vic

Posted by Vic on February 26, 2001 at 22:02:59:


She cannot trademark those words. They’re too descriptive. The only thing she can do is register her logo or artwork that she would use which would have those words in it, but the words themselves would be excluded from the registration. In other words, the art work itself & the design of it can be registered but the words “lease to own” would be excluded.

I know this because I tried to register the name of my company & they said that the name of my company was too generic & they wouldn’t be able to do it. I could however have registered my logo with the generic words in them, but only the logo itself would be protected.

At least this is what I was told when I tried to register my name, which they thought was generic. The words they objected to were “real estate services”. They said that was too generic.

Furthermore, a trademark means little anyway. All it means is that someone is using that name to do business. It means that someone has applied (or maybe hasn’t applied yet) to do business using that name.

Hope this helps,

Re: Lease to Own?? - Posted by PatrickMD

Posted by PatrickMD on February 26, 2001 at 21:53:01:

Joe, I have trademarked the sign language hand symbol used extensively in rush hour traffic close-calls, known as the Bronx Salute. You’re welcome to use it (for a slight fee, of course).
I also own the Short Line, the Reading, the B&O, and the Pennsylvania Rail Roads.
Good luck!

Re: Lease to Own?? - Posted by Jim IL

Posted by Jim IL on February 26, 2001 at 21:14:49:

There was a related thread to this one just last year I think.
Someone here was told that “rent to own” was a trademark for some local rental furntiure store and they were called.
Not sure what the outcome of that was?
Might be helpful to look that up in the archives here.

Let us know what you find if anything please.
Jim IL

Re: Lease to Own?? - Posted by Tony

Posted by Tony on February 26, 2001 at 21:13:42:

Sounds similar to when there were people registering names of comapnies on the internet on their own and then trying to sell the name to the company for 100 of thousands(darn wish I would have gotten that idea) but then Wendys took them to court and they could not longer do that so I guess this lady is in the same boat. Trying to cash in on some quick dough. Good Scam I mean scheme.

Re: Lease to Own?? - Posted by Terry (Houston)

Posted by Terry (Houston) on February 26, 2001 at 21:09:20:

The system is down but here is a place to start.


Re: Lease to Own?? - Posted by Todd (MO)

Posted by Todd (MO) on February 26, 2001 at 21:06:17:


If she is able to trademark it then she will put virtually every real estate publication and furniture store out of business. I would like to hear if it is legit or not. And if it is it should be contested.

Years ago, Gene Simmons of the rock group KISS had a bass guitar that looked like an axe. He says that he started the fad of guitarist calling their guitars “axes” and tried to get the term “axe” trademarked.

The courts refused him the right to trademark it since it was not unique to his business and it was such a common term that was already in the public domain.

If she can trademark such a term then we should all rush to trademark everything else like “No Money Down”, “Lease/Option”, etc.

Let me know what you find out.


Re: Lease to Own?? - Posted by Lisa in VA

Posted by Lisa in VA on February 26, 2001 at 21:03:32:

Youv’e gotta be kidding@!&^9#$90
I guess I should run out and trademark SALE, Going out of Business, Discount, 50% Discount, Save Today…hell how about the whole darned dictionary.

Good luck.