FAQ [About Trademarks]

Trademarks and Service Marks fall under one of the most sumptuous and vital categories of intellectual property in various sectors of economy. Hence, these trademarks & service marks are certainly the most served intellectual property by our full-fledged and globally prominent law firm of Delhi. The full gamut of legal and advisory services related with trademarks & service marks is extended efficiently and expertly by our well-informed and veteran trademark lawyers of international repute to Indian and foreign people and entities. Presented hereunder is the basic and very significant information related with these trademarks, to help our Indian and global visitors associated with various economic sectors.

WHAT IS A TRADEMARK and WHAT IS A SERVICE MARK ?

  • A Trademark distinguishes the product of any company from the similar products of all other companies in the concerned jurisdictional marketplace.
  • A Service mark does the same purpose for the service of any service-proving company.

Again, a trademark or service mark can be any specific indication (two-dimensional or three-dimensional) that serves the main purpose mentioned above, and is fully capable of being represented graphically. The types of trademarks that can now be registered in India and abroad are listed below. Thus, in short, a trademark/service mark serves as a prominent identification to the concerned company in the marketplace.

WHAT TYPES OF TRADEMARKS CAN BE REGISTERED ?

Usually, a conventional trademark and service mark comprised anyone or more of the following distinguishing indicators:
  • Word or Wordmark
  • Name
  • Symbol
  • Sign or Signature
  • Graphic Mark or Design (Logo)
  • Slogan or Phrase
  • Sounds
  • A Combination of certain Letters, Numbers, or Colors
Today, in addition to these most popular conventional trademarks, the following can also be registered in India and countries worldwide:
  • Three-dimensional Shape of Product, or the Packaging of the same
  • Any Distinct Sound
  • Any Specific Smell
  • Any Specific Color or Color Combination
  • And, any other indication that satisfies the requirement of being a trademark.

WHY IS TRADEMARK PROTECTION NEEDED ?

Only a protected trademark offers the trademark owner the legitimate rights within the concerned jurisdiction regarding the exclusive authority over the trademark, commercial utilization of the trademark, taking rigorous legal action against trademark infringements by other people and entities, and hiring or sale of his trademark. This trademark protection is achievable through proper registration of the trademark in the desired jurisdictions. Without registration, none of the above-mentioned rights are enjoyable by the owner/user of a trademark.

WHAT ARE THE CLASSES OF TRADEMARKS/SERVICE MARKS ?

According to the International Classification of Nice Agreement, there are 34 broad classes for products, and 11 specific classes for services, thus forming a total of 45 classes for trademarks and service marks. The majority of countries of the world have adopted this classification of trademarks and service marks, including India. India had increased its classes for service marks to 11, as per an amendment made in the year 2010, in its Trade Marks Rules of 2002. Specifying appropriate trademark class is mandatory while filing application for registration.

WHERE TO REGISTER YOUR TRADEMARK ?

For doing business at the provincial or national levels, you require to register you trademark or service mark as per the provisions and rules given in the trademark law of your native country. For example, for business conduction using a trademark in any place of India, one essentially needs to register the proposed trademark as per the Trade Marks Act of 1999, and the Trade Marks Rules of 2002. And, for business extension to any targeted foreign country, an Indian company will require to get his trademark separately registered in the specified foreign country, say France.

Today, getting one's trademark registered and protected in any foreign country has become rather easy and convenient. It is because, the majority of the countries of the world are members to any of the four major international/regional treaties or conventions related with trademarks, these are --- the TRIPS Agreement of WTO, the Madrid Protocol of WIPO, the Berne or Paris Convention, and the Community Trademark (CTM) of the European Union. To get one's trademark registered in one or more member countries to any specified regional trademark convention say the European Community Trademark (CTM), one just needs to file a single application. Hence, one can get one's trademark registered in France, UK, and Belgium, through filing just a single application to the European Trademark Office located in Alicante, Spain. At present, the number of the member countries of TRIPS Agreement, Madrid Protocol, and Paris Convention is about 150, 90, and 170, respectively.

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