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Trademark Registration in India: The Whole Mechanism

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Introduction

To be put in a layman's language one can say that trademarks can be understood to mean signs that are unique which are employed in distinguishing the goods and services of one company to that of another. They include within its realm designs, signs and much more. This is important since it enables us to differentiate the product from the rest. It can be assigned to a product or to a brand.

A trademark is considered to be intellectual property and therefore if in the case it is infringed, it gives rise to legal action. Trademark laws in India are governed by the trademark Act, 1999.  In order to equip your trademark with protection, one must get it registered, this will ensure that your mark is safe from being copied. Trademarks help the customers in identifying the brand too easily and it increases the brand value also.
Read Our Blog: Trademark Law in India

A trademark expires within a period of ten years of its registration but the cherry on the cake is that it can be renewed again and again

Why to Trademark a Brand?

Trademarks undoubtedly provide protection to the brand name and secure the reputation of the company which is crucial in itself in today's time 

The process of trademark registration in India can now be done conveniently and in sound manner. The given below is the list that sets out the things that can be trademarked in singularity or in combination.

  1. Smell
  2. Mixture of colors
  3. Number
  4. Letter
  5. Word or group of words
  6. Logo etc.

What is a Trademark Registry?

Year 1940 witnessed the establishment of the trademark registry and subsequently, in the year 1999 trademarks Act was passed. The current role of the trademark registry is to act as a functional body. It facilitates the implementation of all the related rules and regulations with that of trademark law.

Mumbai is the prime location of the head office of the trademark registry with its branches spread out in the states like Delhi, Kolkata etc. The work of the registry usually deals with ensuring that the requisite trademark fulfills all the conditions as set out in the act before carrying out its registration process.
Read Our Blog: What is Trademark Registration?

Applying for Trademark: Eligibility

The applicant seeking to register the trademark through the registration form of trademark would be entitled to be called as its sole owner. To be precise any individual or a company can apply for trademark registration.

Trademark Registration: Whole Process

The trademark registration process can be broken down in the following steps:

  • Select a trademark: It is a crucial step which asks for selecting a unique mark which shall represent the brand or the company. Don't forget to identify the class to which the mark shall belong. At present there are in total forty five classes under which the trademark registration can take place.
  • Searching for similar marks: The second step deals with the credible searching about whether the mark you have chosen is similar to the already registered mark. You can either do this yourself by visiting the official website or hire legal services.
  • Application filing: The applicant is presented with majorly two options for registering the trademark, the first one being applying physically and the second option is to apply online. For applying online one can visit the website of Controller General of patents, Designs and Trademarks. For the registration purpose Form TM_A must be filled. In case the applicant is not an individual or a small enterprise then they are required to pay Rs 9000 if you are applying online and on the hand if the form is being filled in person then an amount of Rs 10,000 must be paid. If the applicant is an individual or small enterprise then an amount of Rs 4500 must be paid while e-filing and an amount of Rs 5000 must be paid in case the form is filed in person.

Make sure that when you file the application it should be free from any mistakes otherwise the form would become susceptible to rejection. All the details must be furnished together with the trademarks picture.

Trademark Registration: Online Procedure

  • The very first step is to search for a brand name or symbol that should in itself be unique. While searching for it the internet can provide an array of ideas, make fruitful use of it. Try to be as innovative as you can be.
  • The second step revolves around the trademark application that must be carefully filled out. Tagged along with application, the applicant is required to submit the following requisite documents:
  1. Proof as to certifying the business registration
  2. Trademark's soft copy
  3. Copy of POA(power of attorney) showcasing signature by the applicant
  • The third step lies in filling out the appropriate application form in order to register the trademark. One can file the application either online or manually. After you submit the application the applicant would receive an acknowledgement receipt that would allow the owner to start using the trademark.
  • Under this step, the Registrar shall examine that the mark chosen by the applicant is fulfilling the legal requirements. This is done to avoid any arising conflict with respect to the already existing brand names or symbols.
  • Thereafter the trademark would be published in the Indian trademark journal.
  • After all the above steps, the final step would culminate in the issuance of the registration certificate along with the registry seal. This shall ensure that the trademark is well under the garb of protection.

Read Our Blog: How to Apply For Trademark in India

Trademark Registration: Benefits

  • The first benefit is that it comes packed with legal protection. This means that the registered trademark cannot be used by any other individual, if in case it is used in an unauthorized manner it shall welcome legal action.
  • The next benefit helps with the differentiation of the product from that of the competitors.
  • The trademark registration open the portals for brand recognition and aid the customers to easily identify the products
  • It sets up a goodwill and overall represents the company's mission.

Conclusion

In the nutshell, it can be concluded that with registering the trademark one can easily make use of many benefits. It is crystal clear that it leads to an increase in brand value.

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Author
Vinay Singh
Vinay Thakur is Managing Partner in Corpseed. He focused on payments, digital transformation, and financial technology for over 15 years and holds strong expertise on fintech startups, banking innovation, and investors with a keen understanding of the trends and activities of startups, banks, and investors in the space.