TRADEMARK

A trademark is a type of intellectual property, and typically a name, phrase word, logo, symbol, design, image and a combination of these elements.

Registration of Trademarks in India governed by the Indian Trade Marks Act, 1999 & Indian Trade Marks Rules, 2002 (and amendments thereof). The Trademark Act & Trademark Rules seeks to provide for the registration of trademarks relating to goods and services in India. The rights granted under the Act, are operative in the whole of India.

How to register a trademarkĀ is the main question before trademark owner. There are several reasons to register a trademark for your business. Anything that helps to describe your company's services or product should be very important and therefore protected. One of the first steps to register a trademark is to ensure that you haven't chosen a name, logo, or slogan that is already taken and registered. You will have to do a wide search to ensure that your intellectual property to be registered is unique.

STAGES OF TRADEMARK REGISTRAION

Stage: 1
Trademark search:
Although it is not mandatory, but it is highly recommended to conduct a trademark search before filing for a trademark registration application to ensure that there is not a prior existing mark similar to yours that could prevent your mark obtaining registration. It is also useful for you to know whether there are similar marks in the marketplace.

Stage: 2
Drafting and Filing of Trademark Registration Application:
Once the relevant searches have been conducted with the results showing the mark is not too similar to a previously existing mark, then a trademark application is filed with Trade Marks Registry India.

At this stage it is necessary to define the goods and services for which trademark protection is sought. This should be as broad as possible (but not so broad as to be meaningless) as you are endowed protection from a potential infringer only for the goods and services covered by the application. It should include even future uses of the mark.

Stage: 3
Examination Report:
Trade Marks Registry will then examine the mark to ensure it meets the requirements for registrability in India. Examination currently occurs around 8-10 months after filing the application, however it is possible to request an expedited examination by paying extra government fees.

Stage: 4
Respond to objections, if any:
Objections arising from examination are common. They can often be overcome by: submitting legal arguments as to why the mark should indeed be registered; or providing evidence that the mark has been in use for a sufficient time; or altering the goods/services of the trade mark specification.

Stage: 5
Acceptance before Registration:
If there are no objections from Trade Marks Registry, or they are overcome, then a notice of acceptance will issue. The acceptance and details of the mark will be published shortly thereafter in the Trade Marks Journal, and once published, there is a four months period in which other parties can formally oppose the registration of the mark.

Stage:6
Registration:
If there are no oppositions within 4 months from the date of advertisement in the Trade Marks Journal, then the trademark registration certificate will issue. Once registered a trademark will be valid for 10 years thereafter it can be renewed for another 10 years upon paying the government fees.