International Trade Marks
To register a trade mark registration in overseas countries, you have three options: To file using the Madrid Protocol application process which covers 100 international countries, using the European Union Trade Mark application process which covers 28 EU countries or filing direct in the country / countries of interest.
> MADRID PROTOCOL
The international Trade Mark registration system (Madrid Protocol) allows for a single application to be filed in up to 100 countries. The registration process is administered centrally through the World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO). The main advantages of registering a Trade Mark through the Madrid Protocol are :
There is no need to instruct attorneys (in most cases) in each country thus saving costs.
It’s a single application process and filing fee.
Additional countries can be added after the date of the original filing.
The registration process is quicker than filing in many countries.
In order to register a Trade Mark through the Madrid protocol, certain conditions must be met.
The applicant must : be either a UK national or resident, or a UK company, or a company with a place of business in the United Kingdom - have a UK or European Union Trade Mark application or registration for the same Trade Mark.
> EUROPEAN UNION TRADE MARK
A European Union Trade Mark application process is a cost-effective way to secure protection across 28 European Union member states in a single registration.
Also known as EUTM, a European Union Trade Mark is a unitary right. Which means the Trade mark application must be accepted by all the EU member states. If any one of the EU members rejects the application, due to a conflicting prior application, registration or unregistered right, this in most cases can be used to oppose or invalidate the application and registration process throughout the EU.
> COUNTRIES COVERED BY A EUROPEAN UNION TRADE MARK :
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom
> DIRECT FILING IN THE COUNTRY / COUNTRIES OF INTEREST
If a Trade Mark only needs to be registered in one or a few countries or cannot be registered through the one of the International processes, it is possible to register the Trade Mark direct with the country / countries of interest.
Although the application and registration process varies from country to country, the principles of making an application etc are very similar to that of the UK. A search is carried out and then the application is then examined. If the examiner determines the application to be valid a certification of registration will be made. If the examiner objects to the application, the applicant has the right to file a defense or make amendments.
Application costs vary from country to country and is dependent on the classes (good and services) the Trade Mark wishes to cover and whether any objections are raised during the examination process.
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