Industry News

Trademark judges uphold NAR’s right to Realtor mark

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A three-judge panel of the United States Trademark Trial and Appeal Board unanimously ruled that the terms "Realtor" and "Realtors" are not generic terms. Petitions to cancel the National Association of Realtors' rights to these terms were denied. In the 39-page opinion, the judges made the affirmative finding that the terms are not generic, that is, they are not synonymous with real estate agent or real estate agents, and concluded that the petitioner failed to prove otherwise. "This is a tremendous victory for Realtors everywhere, affirming our right to the terms 'Realtor' and 'Realtors,' which designate the highest standards of professionalism and commitment to a strict Code of Ethics. The trademark decision puts to rest any question about NAR's exclusive rights to these terms," said NAR President Walt McDonald, president of Walt McDonald Real Estate, Riverside, Calif. The Trademark Board's decision was issued in a case involving a challenge brought by Jacob Zimmerman, a former...