A trademark is a design, symbol, or expression which identifies a company or its products. A trademark can be in the form of a logo, image, symbol, word(s), letter(s) or colour(s). It’s often noted by way of ™ (if unregistered) or ® (if registered). Trademarked products are considered as a form of intellectual property.
Trademark Registration helps you to protect the logo, words, names, or symbols that represent the products and services you offer. By registering a trademark in India, you can ensure that no one else can use that symbol or name to sell their own products. It’s important to register a trademark because otherwise anyone could steal your brand name and sell their products as if they were yours. A trademark is a symbol or word used to identify a company’s product or service. It can be seen on the label, package, or product itself. In India, registering a trademark allows the owner to use it as long as it remains in use.
Registering your trademark in India can give you several advantages.
- Trademark registrations are unique to the products or goods they represent and act as a valuable asset for your business. They allow your products to be differentiated from those of your competitors in the same marketplace. Trademarks enable you to build a client base based on recognition of your business’s trademarks and differentiate your products or goods in the marketplace.
- Trademark registration is valid for 10 years in India from the date of filing the application. However, after ten years, a trademark owner can renew it also. If your business expands outside India and you want to use a trademark in other countries as well, then you will need approval or registration in those countries. In such cases, your Indian registration serves as the foundation to get registrations in other countries.
- You can build a solid customer base by registering your Trademark. Registration grants exclusive rights of use for ten years, and it helps you safeguard your business profits. You can leverage the advantages of a client base by introducing new products and expand your business.
- Your customers associate the quality, features, and so on of your products with your company. They recognize a product by its logo, which is usually registered as a trademark. Registering a trademark helps build your brand recognition, so that people identify your products and associate them with your company. This generates goodwill for you, making it easier for people to remember you and your products.
- Trademarks are a part of Intellectual Property, and they are protected from infringement. Registering a Trademark provides an exclusive right to use the Trademark regarding the “Class” of products or services it represents. Using the Symbol “TM” in connection with your products is allowed once you file an application for Trademark Registration, and using the Symbol “R” is allowed only after you receive a certificate of registration from the Patent and Trademark Office. If someone infringes on your registered Trademark, you can sue them for doing so without permission from you, the owner of the mark.
To get a trademark, you go through the following steps:
- Trademark Search- TM search helps you find similar trademarks that may be available, and it lets you know if there are others out there who are using the same or similar marks. It also gives you a picture of where your mark stands, sometimes giving you advance notice of potential trademark litigation.
- Filing Online Trademark Application- Once you are sure that your brand name or logo is not listed in the Trademark Registry India, you can apply for a trademark. The first step is to file an application at the Trademark Registry India. Filing can be done online.
- Examination of trademark application- After you file a trademark, it goes to the Trademark Office for examination. The examiner looks for any discrepancies, such as an improper description of your goods or services. This process takes about 2-3 months. The examiner can accept your trademark absolutely or conditionally; he or she might also reject it.
- Publication of trademark application in trademark journal – The trademark registration process includes a step where anyone who objects to the registering of the trademark has the opportunity to oppose it. If, after three to four months from publication, there is no opposition, and the trademark proceeds for registration. In case there is opposition; there is a fair hearing and decision are given by the Registrar.
- Issue of Trademark Registration Certificate – After your trademark application has been published in the Trademark Journal, you will receive a registration certificate under the seal of the Trademark Office.
- Renewal of Trademark already registered – The trademark can be renewed for 10 additional years after every decade. Hence, your logo or brand name may be protected for a very long time.