Friday, 3 March 2017

What is trademark?

A trademark is considered to be a unique expression which can be a word, logo, graphics, photograph, slogan, the name of the entity, color combination etc. which distinguishes a product or a service. The owner of the trademark gets exclusive rights to their use under certain categories. Registration of a trademark in India can be done either online or offline. It varies according to the jurisdiction of the individual or entity. Getting a trademark registered in India is not a complicated process wherein Trademark logo in India can be applied under the Registrar of Trademarks.

ONLINE MODE:
  • The logo/ symbol/name etc. is designed.
  • Searching for the class/category of the logo to be trademarked.
  • A public search for the logo and check whether it is resembling or not to the existing logo.
  • Application filed with the Register of Trademarks under form TM-1.
  • Application signed digitally.
  • Payment of requisite fees done online.
  • Checking for status through the acknowledgment receipt received online after the payment is done.

OFFLINE MODE:
  • The logo/ symbol/name etc. is designed.
  • Searching for the class/category of the logo to be trademarked.
  • A public search for the logo and check whether it is resembling or not to the existing logo.
  • Application filed with the Registrar of Trademarks under form TM-1 physically.
  • Payment of requisite fees done at the registrar of trademark physically
  • Receipt of physical copy of application
  • Checking for status through the acknowledgment receipt received after the payment is done.

Registered trademark search in India: Trademarks which are applied, can be searched under the official site of Ministry of Corporate Affairs. For this process, a complete and detailed search needs to be done for the class of trademark. The trademark logo is distinguished according to the goods and services underclasses.

Process of search
Classify the class of goods/services provided for which Logo needs to be designed.
Once the class is defined, go to Ministry of Corporate Affairs Site, that is www.mca.gov.in
Under services column, go for trademark search.
Enter the relevant class and word applicable, and search the logo.

Benefits of registration of Trademark
  • Exclusive rights: once the trademark is registered, the exclusive rights are obtained in respect of logo, name, and legality.
  • Goodwill and brand value: with the trademark, the brand value shall increase if the company/entity possess the logo which is registered.
  • Protects confusion among various other logos: a distinctive logo which is registered helps the organization be apart from unregistered ones.

Trademark Registration in the USA
The USA trademark and patent registration are done under U. S. Patent and trademark office (USPTO) where online filing is done through TEAS (Trademark electronic application system).

The types of applications that can be filed for registration are Traditional marks (words, design, and combination marks)
  • Non-traditional
  • Non-visual marks (color, shape/configuration, sound, scent, flavor, touch and motion marks)
  • Collective marks
  • Certification marks
What is wordmark?
Work mark refers to standard character drawings, such as letters and words depicted in Latin characters: all numbers in roman, Arabic numerals. It includes only common punctuation or diacritical marks but does not include a design element.

What is Design Mark?
Design mark is stylized wording or design and image of particular criteria. All lines must be clean, sharp, solid, and of high quality.

Color mark: the applicant shall submit the distinctiveness of color marks and drawings and also accompanied by other features. The generic name(s) of the color (s) should be used in color claim and location statement.

Shape (3D) mark (the configuration, shape, design, product or packaging): it should include a description of the mark indicating that the mark is three dimensional and a drawing presenting a single rendition of the mark).

Information required:
  • The name of applicant
  • Design and other non-traditional marks and a clear drawing of the mark.
  • Listing of goods/services that are or will be sold/offered in connection with the mark.
  • The fees of filing fee for the class of trademark can be checked through USPTO website.
  • Additional requirements
  • Information about the applicant.
  • If the applicant is other than individual then the type of legal entity.
  • Country of incorporation, citizenship.
  • The application needs to be signed by the person with legal authority to bind the applicant.
  • Wherever applicable an English translation or transliteration of any non-English words in the mark.

The time period has taken:
Generally, it takes around a year for the registration, if there is no substantive objections raised, no oppositions filed and the documents are filed electronically.

Patent Registration Process:

The registration of USA patent registration can be assessed through the following flowchart

1. Filing of application

A.Within 12 months, the application is reviewed by the department and checking is done in order to see that the subject matter is applicable to be patented or not.

B. Prior art search is done by the examiner and a first action report is submitted.
      
2. Rejection or objection

A. Applicant responds to the first action report
B. Second action report issued by examiner   
C. Claims allowed    
D. Patent issues

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