This Is what I have heard fromn family, but If I where you I would look up uspto.gov to verify the information
As soon as you start using your name officaly it is yours and no one can tell you not to use it as long as no one else has tradmarked it before you first use.
Now you can not stop anyone else from using it without a tradmark.
Just to add my two cents into this discussion, I was told Unofficially by an attorney that purchasing the domain name for your product may stand up legally if someone else starts using your product name AFTER the website domain was purchased and a website featuring your product was created. So start a small website with the name of your product and that may provide some protection if you cannot provide a trademark at this time
Joe - your name is NOT protected until you do a trademark. It's not complicated - just go to http://www.uspto.gov/ to see if someone has already trademarked the name you want.
Its not complicated. It does cost about $300 per classification. What is your product?