In order to understand what a Notice of Allowance is, we need to take a step back and take a look at a larger concept: filing basis. The most commonly used filing bases in the United States are “in use” and “intent to use”. “In use” means that you are already using the mark in commerce and “intent to use” means that, although you are not yet using the mark in commerce, you intend to start using it later on.
A Notice of Allowance occurs for “intent to use” applications and means that your mark has passed through the publication phase and may almost be ready to register. The only step that remains is proving that you are using your mark in commerce by filing a “Statement of Use”. By filing a “Statement of Use”, you to turn your “intent to use” application into an “in use” application, one of the final hurdles to the registration of your mark.
You will be asked to provide the following: the date when you first used the mark, the date when you first used the mark in commerce, a signed declaration that you are now using the mark in commerce for the identified goods and services, a specimen of use, and required fees.
A Notice of Allowance will note the deadline for a response. You typically have six months from the date of the Notice of Allowance to either (1) submit the Statement of Use or (2) request an extension of time to file the Statement of Use. To avoid abandonment, make sure to comply with the six-month deadline.