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Trademark Registration

Updated: Nov 9, 2023

Intellectual property is a human creation. So, it can be a word, logo, phrase, drawing, or colour. It can even be a fragrance, shape, or sound. Registering a trademark gives someone exclusive rights over it. Additionally, a trademark includes service marks. These are used for services, while trademarks refer to goods. The article will explain trademarks.

Protection of trademark

The protection of a trademark usually lasts 10 years from the first day of application. However, the trademark can be renewed every 10 years. A trademark can either be exclusive to the owner or be sold. Also, it can be licensed to another party for payment. Depending on needs, protection can only be for a country or worldwide.


Process of trademarking

First, an application is filed to register at the National Trademark Office. Then the required fees are paid. However, for protection in Europe, the registry is done at the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO). Lastly, for international protection, the World Intellectual Property Organisation receives the registration.


Types of trademarking


Destination branding

Not only businesses, but also cities, areas, and countries can create a unique identity. Destination branding is the effort to create a distinctive appeal aimed at visitors. For example, “I love NY” is a registered tagline.


Certificate trademarks

The certificate trademarks are mostly used in the tourism industry. small businesses can get distinctiveness and visibility through these trademarks. To explain, they certify that the user complies with certain stipulated criteria. So, some authorities lend their logos to enterprises in the tourism sector. Thus, it proves that they comply with the criteria. For example, the Green Globe Certification testifies the sustainability of a business.


Collective marks

Additionally, collective marks also offer visibility and distinctiveness. For instance, through franchising a big business can draw more attention to smaller companies that are part of the franchise. This way, smaller businesses are aided and rural areas become more popularized. Additionally, merchandising lets others use a trademark, improving the attractiveness of products.


Trademark Coexistence

For this, two different enterprises use the same trademark. Since smaller businesses have limited geographic reach, this is a common practice for them. Additionally, since some trademarks are names of individuals, they are commonly used. To avoid conflicts, most businesses make agreements with each other. Commonly, the “honest concurrent use” is applied. So, duration, geographical region, and other factors are taken into account for jurisdictions.


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European trademark application


Location

All European member states apply for the European trademark. If the individual or company is located in the European Economic Area, it is not necessary to have a professional representative. But, those not in the European Economic Area must have a professional representative for all proceedings before the office. Examination takes place in Alicante, Spain. The previously mentioned EUIPO handles it.


Application of trademark

The application needs to be filed in two languages, one of which is either English, German, Spanish, Italian, or French. Then, EUIPO’s online platform is used for the application. Additionally, it can be sent by fax or at the desk in Alicante. Importantly, the application contains the request for registration, information of the applicant, and the services and goods included. Also, the graphical representation should be included.


Requirements of application

There are two basic requirements. First, the distinctiveness. This entails that consumers can distinguish the goods and services of the company from others. Secondly, descriptiveness. The kind, quality, quantity, intended purpose, value, and geographical location are important to know. The descriptiveness should be direct so that it can easily be understood.


After submitting the application

First, the application fee should be paid within 30 days. Otherwise, a notification will be sent by the EUIPO. Then, there is a two-month time limit. After acceptance, the EUIPO publishes the application. There is a three-month period for objections by other parties. However, in case of rejection, an appeal can be submitted within two months. The Board of Appeal examines it. Afterward, an appeal can be made by the General Court of the EU, followed by the Court of Justice of the EU.



Rafaella Patsali author of article Trademark registration

University of Cyprus – Bachelor of Laws











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