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John Martin Hilla

John Martin Hilla

Detroit-Area Trademark Registration and Bankruptcy Attorney
  • Bankruptcy, Trademarks, Real Estate Law
  • Law Society of Ontario, Michigan
Claimed Lawyer ProfileQ&ASocial Media

John Hilla is a Detroit-area trademark and bankruptcy attorney.

A graduate of the Wayne State University Law School in Detroit, he also holds a Master's degree in International Law from the George Washington University Law School in Washington, DC.

John is a former music publisher, musician, and author who especially enjoys assisting bands, musicians, record labels, and related start-ups with their trademark and contractual needs.

Practice Areas
  • Bankruptcy
  • Trademarks
  • Real Estate Law
  • Free Consultation
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
Law Society of Ontario
ID Number: 78008N
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  • English: Spoken, Written
  • Turkish: Spoken
Professional Experience
Managing Attorney
The Hilla Law Firm, PLLC
Consumer bankruptcy and trademark registration practice.
Aronoff & Linnell, PLLC
The Law Offices of John M. Hilla, PLLC
The George Washington University Law School
LL.M | International & Comparative Law
The George Washington University Law School Logo
Wayne State University Law School
J.D | Law
Wayne State University Law School Logo
Wayne State University
B.A | English
Wayne State University Logo
Professional Associations
Michigan State Bar # 69128
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Consumer Bankruptcy Association
- Current
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National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
- Current
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Articles & Publications
Am I Responsible for my Fiancee's Debt After Marriage?
The Detroit Legal News
The Literary Effect of Sovereignty in International Law
The Widener Law Review
The US Invasion of Iraq and Popular Consent in the Formation of Customary International Law
The Michigan International Lawyer
Draft Commentary for Art. 479 of the Provisional Kosovo Criminal Procedure Code
US State Department in conjunction with George Washington University
Websites & Blogs
Detroit Bankruptcy Attorney
Detroit Bankruptcy and Trademark Blog
Legal Answers
57 Questions Answered

Q. Is it ok to register a business / trademark using a different name?
A: This response is not specific legal advice and is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship. You should speak with a trademark registration attorney for specific information regarding your particular proposed trademark . A trademark is a word, name, phrase, slogan, or logo that uniquely identifies the source of a product or service sold in interstate commerce. Some companies own many trademarks. One of those trademarks owned might be the name of the actual business, or it might be the name of a product.
Q. I'm trying to make a clothing brand named blase, would i still be able to or is there legal issues?
A: Consult a trademark attorney to discuss your proposed mark in a private consultation. Many of us offer free virtual consultations to potential clients nationwide. The first step that is required to answer your question is to retain an attorney to conduct a thorough clearance search for your proposed mark, searching not only the Federal trademark register but also state registries, business registrations, social media, other points of evidence that another individual or company may already be using the mark in interstate commerce. For our clients, we will then review the results, weigh the odds of successfully registering the trademark with the US Patent & Trademark Office, and provide you an opinion of those odds so that you can make an educated decision whether or not to proceed with the application.
Q. Can my logo that is a registered trademark change the background color while still keeping its tradmark
A: If you filed a design mark application with a color specimen and registered it with color, the registration protects that specific design exactly as filed. Changing the color will remove the design or logo from the umbrella of protection offered by the USPTO registration. This is why, generally, the first design mark application filed is for a black-and-white iteration of the design so that it is protected regardless of the color scheme. To protect your design with new color scheme, a new Federal USPTO trademark application will need to be filed. If you require assistance, feel free to contact me at (734) 743-1489. Website link beside my name.
Q. What constitutes "use in commerce" in videogame development?
A: No, it must be able to actually be purchased by end-users via Google Play, iTunes, or Android store, or other platform, in order to be "in use in interstate commerce." It is possible to file an "intent to use" prior to this point, while you are in development. Please feel free to access my website through the link provided by Justia if you would like to discuss in detail.
Q. how can I reinstate a trademark that was abandoned?
A: Presuming the mark is yours and that you're not trying to "reinstate" someone else's abandoned mark, if the mark was abandoned for failure to respond to a USPTO Office Action, you can file a petition to revive. If the mark was abandoned due to USPTO error, you can file a request for reinstatement. If the mark was abandoned due to your failure to file a Statement of Use and the failure was unintentional, you can also file a petition to revive. And so on. If these petitions or requests are denied, then you need to file a new application. I would also be happy to assist. .
Q. Can I trademark my blog name if someone else recently started using it for their brand. It is not registered by either
A: The US is a "first to use" jurisdiction in terms of trademark registration and not a "first to register" jurisdiction. If you were first to use the name and the first to apply to register the name, potentially, you should speak with a trademark registration lawyer--and I'd be happy to do so--regarding filing your application ASAP. The trick with registering a blog name is the question of the product or service the blog-name identifies to consumers. Trademark protection is not like copyright protection that way: it doesn't protect your "artistic work" but, rather, consumers' right to know what they are buying & from whom. If your blog is just some level of online diary and you are not selling anything--it may not be registrable. But speak with an attorney. Many, such as myself, offer free consultations to clients nationally and via telephone or Skype, etc.
Q. Hello If I’m looking to trademark the term Grind In Silence would I be able to do this for my t shirt company?
A: If "Grind in Silence" is the name of company producing the t-shirt products which you wish consumers to associate with that term/name, you can contact a trademark attorney to discuss running a full clearance search prior to filing a an application for trademark application with the US Patent & Trademark Office. If the term is not infringing on any other trademark or business usage, your attorney can prepare, file, and prosecute your trademark application for that term. It is, however, important to keep in mind that trademark protection doesn't protect your "expression" as copyright does: it protects consumers and their right to a guarantee that a product or service originates with a specific source. That is, Coca Cola's trademark of that name ensures that, when you buy a bottle of soda, you are getting the product of the Coca Cola corporation, and not some knock-off. So, if your product is t-shirts, a trademark registration ensures that, when a consumer purchases a "Grind in Silence" t-shirt, it comes from you and not from Fruit of the Loom. You cannot, however, simply print "Grind in Silence" ON a Fruit of the Loom white t-shirt and trademark that. Your name needs to be on the hang-tag of the shirt, not Fruit of the Loom, etc.
Q. When should you get your brand and or logo trademark?
A: Ideally, you should conceive your company name and related logo or design in the planning stages of your business or venture, before you have invested too much capital in the idea. If you've done that, you can consult with a trademark attorney as to the registrability of the proposed mark, possible issues that a knowledgeable attorney can divine straight out of the gate, and proceed to engage the attorney to conduct a thorough clearance search of possible competing marks or potential sources of infringement allegations. If, having taken those steps, you determine that the mark is not worth investing in, you still have the ability to re-conceive and re-brand, and continue forward with something that will be registrable with the USPTO. You can, along the way, discuss with your trademark attorney in a private consultation whether it is best to file an "intent to use" trademark applicable before you have actually launched your business or whether you might want to wait until it is "in use" (in interstate commerce) before applying. Most attorneys offer free consultations, and trademark representation is not restricted to a local geographic area, as it is a Federal practice.
Q. I need to add a trademark for my business an amazon store, Need only one trademark number how much and how long thank u
A: Legal services are not one-price-fits-all situation, but, as noted by my colleague who has already answered, $1000-$1500 in single-application, single international class cases is not unusual. Much depends on your business, your proposed trademark, whether you are interested in protecting your name/words alone or a logo or design, or both. A pre-filing clearance search conducted by a knowledgeable trademark attorney to ensure you are not infringing anyone else's registered mark, or that the mark is not in use in commerce in any other form is advisable. I would recommend that the full registration process, once an application is filed, can take as long as a year. Start by contacting an attorney to discuss your particular mark and your particular options in a private consultation.
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Contact & Map
The Hilla Law Firm, PLLC
19500 Middlebelt Road
Suite 223E
Livonia, MI 48152
Telephone: (734) 743-1489