Apply trademark online – A trademark is a visual representation of a name, word, label, device, or numeric characters that a business uses to distinguish its products and/or services from other products and/or services of a similar nature coming from another firm. A trademark serves as the only way to distinguish the products and/or services that a person is selling from similar ones.
Once registered, a trademark is an inalienable piece of intellectual property that a firm can use to protect its investment in its name or logo.
Once a trademark may be used to identify the goods and services being offered, it is registered. Trademarks that are offered for registration but are the same as or nearly the same as a trademark that has already been registered are not eligible. Additionally, trademarks that are generic, insulting, confusingly identical, only contain protected insignia, etc. are not permitted to be registered.
India’s Controller General of Patents, Designs, and Trademarks is responsible for trademark registration. The Trademark Act, 2016, which grants the ability to sue for damages when trademarks are violated, governs the registration of trademarks in India.
Following trademark registration, the owner may use the sign, and the trademark registration will be in effect for a set term of ten years. However, if a registered trademark is close to expiring, it is simple to renew it by submitting a trademark renewal application for an additional 10-year extension.
How to register a trademark step by step
There are several steps involved in registering a trademark: submitting an application, having the trademark investigated, publishing or advertising it, facing opposition (objections), if any are raised or found, registering the trademark, and renewing it every ten years.
While registering a trademark is a simple process, it is advisable to employ or seek legal advice from a trademark professional to speed up and improve the process’ accuracy.
To look up a trademark
The applicant should choose their trademark carefully. Since there are already numerous different types of trademarks available, it is essential to perform a public search on the Trade Marks Registry’s database after choosing a trademark to ensure that it is unique and that no other trademark exists that is either similar to or identical to his or her trademark.
Any form of trademark that is currently in use, whether it is registered or not, can be found via a trademark search. If a competing trademark application exists, it will also be shown by the search.
Application for a trademark to be filed
A single-class or multi-class application for trademark registration may be made, depending totally on the goods and services the business provides.
Form TM-A, the registration application form, can be sent in person to the Trade Marks Office or electronically via the official IP India website, depending on the domain of the trademark.
The application for trademark registration must be accompanied by a number of documents that provide comprehensive information about the trademark for which registration is requested. Additionally, if the applicant asserts prior use of the trademark, a user affidavit supporting the usage and the proof of prior use must be submitted.
Government authority review of the trademark application
Following the trademark application’s filing, the Examiner is required under the Trade Marks Act of 2016 to produce a mandatory examination report after carefully reviewing the trademark application.
It is possible or unlikely that any objections, which may be absolute, relative, or procedural, will be included in the authority’s examination report. The Trademark Authority publishes this examination report 30 days after the registration application is submitted.
It is necessary to respond within 30 days after receiving the examination report, expressing the defences and providing evidence to refute any objections in order to waive them.
The Examiner (Trademark Authority) may set up a hearing if they are not entirely satisfied with the provided reply or if the objections are still unresolved after the reply to the examination report has been filed. The Examiner will make a decision following the hearing regarding whether to accept the mark and submit the application for publication in the journal or to reject it if further objections are presented.
promotional use of the brand
An approved trademark registration application is published in the Trade Marks Journal and is promoted for four months. The printing and exposure stimulate public involvement in a formal protest against the registration of the mark.
The official Registry website, which is updated every Monday of the week, hosts the Trade Marks Journal.
widespread opposition to the idea
Following the trademark’s promotion and publication in a journal, anyone who feels they have been harmed may file a notification objecting to the trademark’s registration. Form TM-O must be used to submit this opposition notification within four months of the trademark’s publication in the Trademark Journal. If the trademark application is contested or objected to, then the proper legal procedure must be followed, which includes filing a counter-statement application, supplying evidence, and holding a hearing in order to register the trademark.
Enrollment of the trademark
After overcoming an opposition and/or resistance to the aforementioned trademark registration, the application moves on to registration, which is the final stage of the process.
If there haven’t been any oppositions to the trademark’s registration throughout the 4 months of advertisement/publication, the trademark also obtains an automatically generated registration certificate within a week. The registration is good for ten years after it is finished, after which it needs to be renewed within a certain time frame.