Applying for a trademark can be done on your own initiative and there are no requirements that a lawyer be involved on your end.
But, to be honest, it really would be in your best interest to speak with an attorney first. Of course no one wants to hear this, and I hate to be “that guy.” However, obviously you care about your company, and you want to make sure it is in the best hands.
Particularly when dealing with IP issue, there are certain fears/concerns about protecting all of your rights. Of the many reasons to hire a lawyer for a TM, here are few…
1. The process can be complex and lengthy. You are most likely focused on developing your company and are probably working full-time in that capacity. Taking up this task on your own can really limit your ability to focus on your company.
2. The research and background work required for TM’s is also exhaustive and can be tricky. Although you may be able to do this yourself, there is a chance you might make a mistake, overlook something, or simply take a path that is not the best for your company. A lawyer is a safe-guard against these problems.
3. Hiring a lawyer who is business savvy and well-versed in your particular industry cannot only help you with your TM, but can also develop a strong business plan moving forward. IP is a particularized field, and getting a lawyer on board who has helped similar clients in the past with IP issues can make a HUGE difference for your business.
If you do decide to go it alone, here is a link to the US TM and Patent Office website;They give you some direction and guidance, as well as links to the relevant documents/forms you will need.
If you want to find a lawyer, you should check out our company. We have a bunch of highly qualified lawyers across the nation who you can connect with 24/7. I hope this answer is helpful. I have personally helped many startups connect with great lawyers, so please don’t hesitate to reach out if you still need a hand! Always happy to help out a fellow startup!