Although they may go largely unnoticed by many trademark applicants, new and updated identifications and classifications published by the USPTO on January 1, 2013 will affect how applicants in particular industries identify and classify their goods and services.  The changes in the USPTO’s Identification Manual reflect those found in the Tenth Edition of the Nice Classification System, which also went into effect January 1, 2013.  Notable identification and classification changes include:

  • Diapers are classified in Class 5 and must be identified according to whether they are to be used by people or pets.  Previously diapers for pets were classified in Class 18.
  • Rental of lighting apparatus other than for “theatrical sets or television studios” is classified in Class 43.  Previously such services were classified in Class 37.
  • Auditing services are classified in Class 35 when they involve accounting and other business-type activities, and auditing services are classified in Class 42 when they involve technical analysis and evaluation.  Previously all auditing services were classified in Class 35.
  • Arranging travel tours is classified in Class 39 and arranging recreational tours is classified in Class 41.  Previously “arranging tours” was classified solely in Class 39.

These classification changes should be noted not only for U.S. trademark applications, but also for foreign trademark applications in any of the 82 other countries that utilize the Nice Classification System.