A trademark is a type of intellectual property consisting of a recognizable sign, design, or expression which identifies products or services of a particular source from those of others, although trademarks used to identify services are usually called service marks. Customers identify a product by its trademark. Value and importance of trademark increases as the business grows. Trademark is a valuable property of any business. Sometimes trademarks like Coca-cola, Pepsi, IBM, Philips, etc. get worldwide recognition. It is necessary for a business that a trademark is not used by an unauthorized person. The Trademarks Act, 1999 has been enacted with an intention to protect rights of trademarks of business.
The foundation behind right to restrain the use of a similar name is the principle that no one is entitled to represent his business or goods as being the business or goods of another. A trademark may consist of a device depicting the picture of animals, human beings, etc., words, letters, numerals, signatures or any combination thereof. Since a trademark indicates relationship in the course of trade, between trader and goods, it serves as a useful medium of advertisement for the goods and their quality.
Definition of Trademark
Trademark means a mark capable of being represented graphically and which is capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one person from those of others and may include shape of goods, their packaging, and combination of colours.
A trademark is any word, symbol, phrase or logo design adopted and placed on a product offered for sale or on a container to identify its source. In this way, the connection between the product and the manufacturer/trader is bought to the notice of the public at large. Trademarks are an integral part of a firm’s strategy to differentiate its products and services from other competitors and to establish consumer brand loyalty.
Trademark search must be completed before trademark registration application to find any faults in existing trademarks. This can be done through government website. Trademarks registration is controlled by Comptroller general of patent designs and trademarks.
Procedure of Trademark Search
Navigate to website of the Comptroller General of Patent Designs and Trademarks and follow these steps:-
Selecting the option “show details” would display information pertaining to the trademark. Trademark must not be registered same as any existing one. If the results show no results found then there’s no registered trademark same as searched ones.
Trademarks are those marks which helps business to get identified in market. It is very easy to get trademark registered but it is preferred by most of the business to get it done professionally in order to avoid any unwanted consequences.
Trademark consultation with professional is very much convenient. It has following benefits-
An application not filed in a manner prescribed can be rejected and applicant will get no legal right on the trademarks. That’s why it is good to get trademarks registered professionally.
Trademarks are those marks which helps business to get identified in market. Trademark registration India is under Controller General of Patents Designs and Trademarks, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India. Trademarks are registered under the Trademark Act, 1999. Trademarks are intellectual property.
Types of Trademarks
Who can apply for trademark registration?
Process of Trademark registration
In case no objection is raised, the trademark registrar will publish an advertisement in the trademarks journal. If no opposition is filed by any party within 4 months, the trademark should be registered within the next 6 months.
Documents required for registration
Advantages of Trademark Registration
After the scrutiny and verification, registrar issues an examination report for trademark. In that report registrar can come up with an objection. A response to this must be filed within a month otherwise registrar will abandon the application.
Reply to objection
Assess the examination report. You must get it done professionally. Get assessment of implications of notice. Get drafted objection reply and review it. Submit the response.
The trademark remains valid just for 10 years after that one needs to file for Trademark Renewal. Trademark renewal must be filed before the expiry of the trademark. The renewal application form must be filed before the deadline to have the seamless protection of the trademark without any chances of litigation.
The process for the same is as follows:-
Trademark Symbols and Their Usages
Grounds for refusal to register trademark
Trademarks infringement is unauthorized usage of any trademark which is registered by someone else. It can be used to deceive customers.
Types of infringement
Trademark infringement can lead to penalty to the organization who infringed it. There can be criminal proceedings as well.
Removal of a Trademark for non-use
Section 47 of the Trademarks Act, 1999 deals with removal of a trademark from the register on the ground of non-use and provides that a trademark which is not used within 5 years of its registration, becomes liable for removal, either completely or in respect of those goods or services for which the mark has not been used.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Ans. The Trademark Registration is registering of visual symbols which can be a word, name, device, label, digits, etc. Trademark registration in India helps the candidate or the trademark owner to safeguard his logo or trademark. Trademark registration also helps to evade duplication within the trademarks.
Ans. The easy way to get trademark registration done, involves the first step as “selecting a name then do a trademark search, after that file an application for the trademark registration”. Then fill the required documents like the name of the trademark or address. Then the application is examined after that the trademark is published in the Indian Trade Mark Journals. Lastly, the issuance of the trademark registration certificate.
Ans. The cost of registering trademarks starts from almost Rs. 6000/-
Ans. The process to get trademark registration:
Step 1: The first step is the choice of a trademark.
Step 2: The applicant must search the trademark records registry and assures that the proposed trademark does not match or the same to the registered mark.
Step 3: The search can be done online or by the trademark office.
Step 4: It is advisable to discuss an experienced lawyer as they are well-versed in their profession and are being prepared to conduct an exhaustive search.
Ans. Every applicant including corporations will have to give the following documents to get a trademark registered: – “Address proof of the person or company registering for the trademark, a copy of the logo, certificate of partnership deed and ID proof of the person registering for the trademark”.
Ans. Trademark infringement is basically the illegal use of a trademark or service mark linked to goods and services.
Ans. Trademark registrations are unique to the goods or services they describe. The registrations can be product or service-specific. Also, they are made under a Class of goods or services they signify. The trademark registration will, hence, be valid for the whole class of goods or services it describes.
Ans. Yes, the authorities mandate it for applicants to check all the documents they submit including the application for trademark registration by applying a Class III Digital signature.
Ans. The registered trademark is valid for only 10 years from the date of filing of an application. After that one needs to apply for trademark renewal.
Ans. Symbol “TM” can be applied after filing of a trademark application. After registering a trademark a symbol “R” must be used. The ® symbol may only be used in connection with the goods and services mentioned on the registration certificate.
Ans. There is no limitation for anyone to apply for a trademark registration in India. Any individual, a foreign company, society or trust, partnership firm, LLP or private limited company, etc anyone can apply.
Ans. The trademark application can be filed as a multiclass application or as a separate single class.
Ans. The Trademark Registry has classified goods and services under 45 classes. Your application must mention the class/classes of the goods/services. The trademark would be registered under those classes only.
Ans. It is valid for a limited period of time i.e. for 10 years. But it is renewable indefinitely. You just need to pay the fee for trademark renewal every time.
Ans. After the application is registered with the government, a TM number is assigned by the trademark department within 1-2 days of submission of application. After this, you can use TM with your brand.
Ans. A trademark is an intellectual property which is being assigned to a word or logo but on another hand, copyright assures you the protection for your unique content such as books, music, videos, songs or even software.