Trademark is an important branch of Intellectual Property Rights. It is a sign, name or word which is capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one enterprise from those of other enterprises. Trademark helps in recognition of product. Any person claiming to be the owner of the trademark or supposed to use the trademark by him in future for this he may apply in writing to the appropriate registrar in a prescribed manner. By registering the Trademark, the owner can prevent the use of his mark or sign by another competitor.
Following is the Procedure for registration of Trademark–
The first step towards registration of trademark is Trademark Search– Many people/entrepreneurs do not comprehend the importance of a Trademark search. Having a unique brand name is not sufficient reason to avoid a Trademark search. This first step is important, to know if there are any similar trademarks available and it gives you a fair picture of where your trademark stands, sometimes, it also gives you a forewarning of the possibility of trademark litigation. One can do this by navigating to the online website of the comptroller general of patents, designs, and trademarks. On the website, one can find an option to do a public search. After the click on this option, you need to choose your class and search the online database.
The Second step is Filling Trademark Application– When you are sure that your chosen brand name or logo is not listed in the Trademark Registry India; you can opt for registering the same. The first step is to file a trademark application at the Trademark Registry India. Nowadays, due to covid-19, filing is mostly done online. Once the application is filed, an official receipt is immediately issued for future reference, if done physically, then it takes up to 15-20 days.
While filing the application, one should take care not to make any errors, as this may result in application delays or even rejection. You must complete all fields and upload an image of the trademark.
Third step is the Examination- After a trademark application is filed; it is examined by the examiner for any discrepancies i.e. to adhere to the specific restrictions governing the use of your brand name, as well as current law. It might take around 12-18 months. The examiner might accept the trademark absolutely, conditionally or object.
If accepted conditionally, the conditions need to be fulfilled; a month’s time would be given to fulfill the conditions or response to the objections. If the response is not accepted, one can request a hearing. If in the hearing, the examiner feels that the trademark should be allowed registration, it proceeds for further procedure.
The fourth step is Publication- As soon as the trademark application is accepted by the examiner, it gets published in the Trademark Journal. This step is incorporated in the registration process, so that anyone who wants to object the registration of trademark has the opportunity to do so. If, within 90 days (or 120 days in certain cases) from the date of publication no opposition is raised, the trademark proceeds for registration.
The fifth step is Issuance of Registration Certificate- Once the application proceeds for trademark registration, The Registrar issues the Registration Certificate, under the seal of the Trademark Office is issued. It certifies that your trademark has now been registered and is protected.
The registration of trademark is valid for 10 years from the date of filing of application. After this time period, you may renew the trademark. The request for renewal can be filed within six months before or after the date of expiry. It can be entirely renewable indefinitely.
The process of registration of trademark in India is simple and does not require much efforts. However, it is the most important procedure to secure your brand name, logo or symbol.
The Trademark Registration Act, 1999
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