In order to understand the concept of trademark or logo registration, it is necessary to know what a trademark is. A Trademark generally refers to a “brand” or “logo “. A trademark (commonly known as brand name) in layman’s language is a visual symbol which may be a word signature, name, device, label, numerals or combination of colours used by one undertaking on goods or services or other articles of commerce to distinguish it from other similar goods or services originating from a different undertaking. Trademark is considered most valuable asset of a business serves as an indication of origin of the goods as well as an indication of quality of goods. The process by which a Mark or Logo of any company or brand is registered under the competent authority is called Trademark or Logo Registration.
There are numerous benefits of trademark registration which are as follows:
- It guarantees the identity of the actual physical origin of goods and services.
- It guarantees quality of the product and authenticity.
- It helps in Advertisement of service or product and enhances purchase.
- It serves as a badge of loyalty and affiliation.
The first and foremost question that arises is who can get the trade mark registered. Any person, claiming to be the proprietor of a trademark used or proposed to be used by him, may apply in writing in prescribed manner for registration.
There are few basic legal requirements for trademark registration in India:
- The selected mark should be capable of being represented graphically (that is in the paper form).
- It must have the ability of distinguishing the goods or services of one undertaking from those of others.
- It should be used or proposed to be used mark in relation to goods or services for the purpose of indicating or so as to indicate a connection or nexus in the course of trade between the goods or services and some person have the right to use the mark with or without identity of that person.
Trademarks in India are registered by the Controller General of Patents Designs and Trademarks, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India. Trademarks are registered under the Trademark Act, 1999 and provide the trademark owner the right to sue for damages when infringements of trademarks occur.
Firstly, an application is filled Upon filing of the application, the registry will issue us with an official receipt with the filing date and number allotted to the application. The application is then formally examined by the Indian Trade Marks Office, as to its inherent registrability and/or any similarity with existing marks. If an objection to registration is raised, an official examination report will issue. To overcome the objection, it is necessary to file a written response or presenting evidence of acquired distinctiveness and in most cases, an interview/hearing with the examiner is posted. The Registrar may require the applicant to file an affidavit testifying to such user with exhibits showing the mark as used.
If, following examination, the trade mark application is considered allowable, a Letter of Acceptance (TLA order) will issue, after which the trademark will be published in the Trade Marks Journal. 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. The registration process involves payment of fee which is fixed by the authorities depending upon the category of trademark.
However, any trademark, which is identical or deceptively similar to an existing registered trademark or trademark for which application for registration has been made, cannot be registered.
Various categories if trademarks can be registered in India , namely;
- Any name (including personal or surname of the applicant or predecessor in business or the signature of the person), which is not unusual for trade to adopt as a mark.
- An invented word or any arbitrary dictionary word or words, not being directly descriptive of the character or quality of the goods/service.
- Letters or numerals or any combination thereof.
- The right to proprietorship of a trademark may be acquired by either registration under the Act or by use in relation to particular goods or service.
- Devices, including fancy devices or symbols
- Combination of colors or even a single color in combination with a word or device
- Shape of goods or their packaging
- Marks constituting a 3- dimensional sign.
- Sound marks when represented in conventional notation or described in words by being graphically represented.
Term of registration of a trademark is ten years, which may be renewed for a further period of ten years on payment of prescribed renewal fees.
The above mentioned information is the gist of general information about process of trademark registration. For details on the same you can visit Company Vakil one of India’s Largest Legal registration Portal, they would be glad to help you Register your Trademark.