- Washington Mutual
- the Bank
- the Company
Further Washington Mutual, Inc. identifies itself in its 10K for 12/31/2007 as the "Company" and as "Washington Mutual."
- "WaMu" = logo or trademark for Washington Mutual, Inc. or the Company
- WMB = Washington Mutual Bank or the Bank
- WMI = Washington Mutual, Inc. or the Company
- WMBFA = Washington Mutual Bank, F.A.
- WMBfsb = Washington Mutual Bank, a federal savings bank
WaMu is a logo or trademark for Washington Mutual, Inc. Logo is defined as a symbol or other design adopted by an organization to identify its products, uniform, vehicles, etc.
Understanding Trademarks – Key Differences between Legal Names, Trade Names, and Trademarks Legal Name vs. Trade Name vs. Trademark
The legal name of a business is the name of the person or entity that owns a business. If the business is a partnership, the legal name is the name given in the partnership agreement or the last names of the partners. For limited liability companies (LLCs) and corporations, the business' legal name is the one that was registered with the state government. A legal name should be used when communicating with the government or other businesses. For example, the business’ legal name should be used when filing tax returns, buying property, or writing checks. A trade name is generally considered the name a business uses for advertising and sales purposes that is different from the legal name in its articles of incorporation or other organizing documents. A trade name can also be referred to as a “Fictitious Name” or a “Doing Business As” (DBA). Examples of trade names are the use of the name "Kodak" by the company whose legal name is “Eastman Kodak Company” or “McDonald’s” by the company whose legal name is “McDonald's Corporation.” A trade name may not include Inc., LLC, Corp. or similar legal endings. Although a trade name may sometimes also be a trademark, a trade name is not, in itself, a form of intellectual property. A company may use a trade name for advertising and trade purposes. It is often the name the general public sees on signs, the internet, and advertisements. A trademark is any word, phrase, design, or symbol that a business uses to distinguish its goods and services from someone else's and to indicate the source of the goods. In short, a trademark is a brand name. A trademark can be any combination of the above and can even be a slogan, such as Coke's "It's the Real Thing." The Nike "swoosh" is a trademark, as is the Gap logo and thousands of other familiar symbols and logos. Trademarks that have been registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office should have the registered trademark symbol ® after the mark on the product, its packaging, or when used in association with the service. If a trade name is similar enough to another’s trademark that it creates a “likelihood of confusion” in the mind of a purchaser, it may be infringing the trademark, which can prove to be a very costly mistake.
Understanding the terms “legal name,” “trade name” and “trademark” can be confusing, however, each of these terms does have a different meaning. While there are gray areas, it is easiest to view legal names and trade names as relating to businesses or entities and trademarks as relating to the products or services of the businesses or entities.