What is the Trademark- Introduction
Well, before discussing the trademark registration in India 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 application for trademark 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.
Procedure For Trademark Registration In India
Step 1: Trademark Search
This research is about for few hours and can cost 0- 500. This step helps you to check whether your business name or logo is similar to other already registered trademarks or not. Generally, trademark agent or attorney conducts this search with the Trademark Office. Agents help you to save your lot of time. In this research, there are two types that are online and offline. It is beneficial for you to do both types of research. It reduces the further complications in the process. Once it is found that your name or logo is unique then you can proceed to the next step.
Step 2: Select Particular Class
The Trademark Registry of India classifies goods and services into different 45 classes. Every brand name or logo is registered under a particular class or a sector of the industry. For example, a business of manufacturing cosmetics products can fall under class 3. Whereas cars are registered under another class. So it is recommended that you should select the class according to the type of business you have. Once you chose your class then you can proceed to the next step.
Step 3: Trademark Application
It generally requires 2-3 days. The trademark attorney or agent will draft trademark application, provided that your business name/logo found to be unique. You will be provided with a unique TM number. This number is very important as:
- It helps to track you trademark application
- It allows you to use the “TM” symbol next to your name or logo.
But you need to change your trademark if someone else already has the trademark. You can start using a ™ symbol as soon as you file the form of the trademark application.
Step 4: Trademark Registration
It takes 18 to 24 months. Cost: Government fees is it would be 9,000/- except in case of Individual/ Startup/ Small Enterprise (Rs. 4,500/-). Trademark attorney professional fees are Rs. 3500/- per application per class.
- The Trademarks office will first check whether it has already be taken or not. If it has, they can raise a trademark objection.
- It makes an advertisement in the Trade Marks Journal if it has no objection.
- In the next 4 months, if there is no opposition from other businesses then after 6 months your trademark is registered.
To sum up,
- Select and authorize a trademark agent or attorney
- The trademark attorney or agent conducts a search.
- Depending on the results of the search, they will draft your trademark application. In case someone already has the same or similar trademark then you need to change your trademark
- The trademark attorney or agent will file your trademark application with the Trademark Office. They also send you the receipt.
- After a few days, they will send you the Original Representation Sheet of your trademark because it has been filed with the Trademark Office.