What is the Trademark- Introduction
Well, before discussing the trademark objection lets see what trademark is. The trademark generally refers to the brand or logo. It is a unique expression related to a product or service that differentiates it from others. Trademark registration can be done for a business name, unique catch phrases, taglines or captions, a combination of colors and different letters, even smell. Trademark gives a company/business separate identity. If they are properly used and promoted, a Trademark can become one of the most valuable assets. Trademarks indicate the origin as well as the quality of the goods. Some popular trademarks include Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Canon, Dell, etc.
Why Register Brand Name or Trademark?
So, if you have a business or planning to have a business, then you may have many questions about the trademark registration in India. First of all, you might think that is it a really necessary step to have a trademark registration for business. Well, what if:
- Someone else is misusing your business name
- You find out later that the name of your business is actually registered with some other company
These can create a huge loss for you in terms of money, hard work, and time. So you need to seriously consider protecting your business identity, name, brand, logo etc. You can protect it only if you register your trademark for business. Any person can apply who claim to be the owner of the trademark. A person can be a proprietor, individual, company or legal entity. The trademark application files within a few days and you can start using “TM” ( for goods) or “SM” (for services) symbol. Once your trademark is registered and registration certificate is issued, you can use the ® (Registered symbol) next to your trademark.
Steps To Take When You Face A Trademark Objection
The most important thing to do when you face a trademark objection is to ask for a “Notice of Opposition” clearly stating the grounds of opposition. You may have seen your trademark as opposed on the trademarks website but you are entitled to receive a physical copy of the notice. No action can be taken against you without the receipt of this notice.
You need to file a counterstatement to the “Notice of Opposition”, known as TM-6. It should be done within 2 months issuing simple denials challenging the grounds of opposition. If you do not file a counterstatement, you will be deemed to have abandoned the mark. Thus filing a counterstatement is imperative.
Within two months of service on your opponent of a copy of the counter-statement, the opponent may decide to submit evidence or merely rely on the facts stated in the notice of opposition. The opponent needs to do either of these things. If he does neither, then he will be deemed to have abandoned his opposition and you can continue with your application.
Within two months of the opponent intimating either course of action, stated above, pursued you will get a chance, if you wish, to submit any evidence or merely reply that you intend to rely on the facts stated in the counter statement and deliver to the opponent copies of the same.
Then within one month from the receipt by the opponent of the copies of the affidavit. The opponent may leave with the Registrar evidence by affidavit in reply and shall deliver to the applicant copies thereof. This evidence will confine to matters strictly in reply
Then the matter goes for hearing where the Registrar decides whether the opposition has any merit. There can be a compromise as to the classes for which the trademark will be issued or an outright decision in favor of the applicant or the opponent.