India is a perfect example of a developing market that has taken off like a rocket. The country, with its population of over 1.2 billion people, is also one of the fastest-growing economies in the world. As such, it’s no wonder that India has become home to an increasing number of global companies and startups looking to expand their presence in this vast market.
Registering your trademark will be no different. However, doing so requires a certain degree of strategic thinking on your part and some planning before you begin. Once you’ve registered your trademark in India, what comes next? We want to help you keep everything straight so that you don’t make any mistakes during the application process.
Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about trademark registration in India – from which department within the government to which sub-category it should be filed under, and how exactly you go about it.
Introduction – Trademark Registration
The protection of trademarks is made easier through the registration process. Once a trademark is registered with the Government, it can be used to obtain the protection of trademark laws. In fact, trademarks are one of the most popular ways by which businesses protect their products and services from potential customers. If you own a business, you probably know that your competition is eager to take away your customers with innovative new marketing campaigns and cheaper prices. Even though you may have a great product or service, without an effective name or logo, you will not be able to compete with other businesses in the marketplace. If you own a small business, having your own trademark may also increase your chances of entering into profitable contracts with suppliers and vendors who need to agree on one single brand name for their company as well as goods sold by them.
What Is a Trademark?
A trademark is a sign that identifies the origin of a product. Trademarks are often applied to goods and services identified by words, logos, images, or any combination thereof. Trademarks are legal documents that protect the owners’ right to use a certain term in connection with a product or service. For example, TomSaw’s patent for the first hand-held saws is held sacred by woodworkers the world over and is widely recognised as the gold standard in stand-alone power tools. The word “saw” is registrable as a trademark in India.
A trademark is a distinctive name, logo, or device that identifies and enables particular products or services to be sold under your name. Trademarks are registered with the Intellectual Property Office of India, which is located in Mumbai. Trademarks are protected under the Indian Trademark Act, 1957. The Act lists the marks that are protected under the law, including descriptive marks, registered marks, geographical marks, service marks, industrial marks, unregistered marks, and trade dress.
Trademark Registration in India
After you’ve registered your trademark, you can begin to use it on products and/or services that are substantially similar to the subject matter of your trademark. This, in turn, will allow you to build brand name recognition and establish yourself as a brand leader in the Indian marketplace. Brand name recognition alone is bound to increase your chances of success in this saturated market. The fact that you’ve chosen to register your trademark in India, and that you’ve chosen to use it in a high-quality, premium product or service, will also give your brand a leg up in the race to gain prominence in the Indian market.
What Can Be Protected Under the Trademark Laws?
- Trademarks protect geographic terms such as “apple,” “pencil,” “iPhone,” and more
- Trademarks protect names such as “Suzy’s Desserts” and “Mason jars.”
- While specific terms and conditions may apply to specific types of products or services, the general rules that govern a trademark’s protection also apply to all types of businesses
- Trademarks also protect logos and design aspects, including the format and color scheme used in logos and other branding materials
- Trademarks protect the substance of a product or service, not just the form in which it is presented.
Eligibility for Trademark Registration
Trademarks are often used to protect unique brands, slogans, and coined phrases. In India, trademark registration is available to individuals, corporations, and non-profit organisations. When it comes to filing a trademark application, however, each class of person or company has its own set of requirements. The following are eligible for trademark registration in India.
An individual who is not in the business of selling goods or services can file a trademark application and get trademark registration for a symbol or word that the applicant intends to use in the future.
A company’s joint proprietors can petition for a trademark together, and the application must include both of their names.
A proprietorship firm may file a trademark application in the name of its proprietor, but not under the names of the business or proprietorship. If you submit an application with both a proprietorship and a business name, those data will be reviewed separately.
When applying for a trademark, a partnership business with a maximum of 10 members must include all of the partners’ names in the application. If there is a minor partner present, the name of the minor’s guardian must be stated.
Limited Liability Partnership
The application should be made in the name of the Limited Liability Partnership (LLP). It is a legal entity in which each participant has their own identity. Because the trademark belongs to the LLP, the partners cannot be the applicant.
Any Indian company, whether private limited, limited, or otherwise organised, must file a trademark application in its name. Any incorporated entity has its own set of rules, so a company’s director cannot be a trademark applicant.
If a foreign incorporated entity applies for a trademark in India, the application must be submitted in the foreign country’s corporate name. Here you should mention the type of registration, the country, and the law.
Society or Trust
If a trademark application is filed on behalf of a trust or society, the controlling trustee, chairman, or secretary must be named.
Documents Required for Trademark Registration in India
Initially, you have to provide us with the following details:
- Applicant’s name
- Business type
- Business objectives
- Brand/logo/slogan name
- Registration address
The documents required for trademark registration in India are:
- Signed Form-48
- Identification proof of the signatory
- Address proof of the signatory
- Business proof (depends on the type of business)
- Udyog Aadhar/MSME registration certificate (optional).
Before you can apply for trademark registration in India, you’ll need to:
- Appoint a trademark attorney in your country or state where the trademark is registered
- File the trademark application in your state or country’s trademark office
- Pay any fees related to the trademark application
- Wait for the office to accept your trademark application
- You may be asked to show your trademark application to other departments within a government agency (for example, if your application is a pharmaceutical product, you’ll need to show it to the department responsible for pharmacare) – If all goes well, the trademark department will issue a trademark license that allows you to use the trademark in certain industries
- Once you’ve obtained a trademark license, you’re ready to take your trademark application to the next level and get it registered in India.
Benefits of Trademark Registration
The main advantage of registering a trademark is the protection it provides. Trademarks are very effective in limiting the amount of competition in the market that may use your name or logo without your permission. Trademarks are also a great way to protect your business’s reputation. If people start using your trademarks in a common place, they are saying “we use this term too” and this will help you build a stronger brand image with potential customers.
Exclusive Rights: The trademark belongs to the owner of the registered trademark. The same can be used by the owner for all products that come within the applied class(es). Furthermore, the owner has sole ownership of the Trademark and can prevent anyone from using it unlicensedly in the same class in which it is registered. It allows the owner of the trademark the ability to sue anyone who uses it without permission.
Builds Trust and Goodwill: The established quality of your product and services is known by everyone thanks to your trademark, which builds trust and goodwill among customers in the market. It aids in the development of long-term clients who are loyal to a single brand.
Differentiates Product: It distinguishes your goods by making it simple for people to locate it. It distinguishes your goods and its identity from that of present and anticipated competitors and serves as an effective promotional tool. Your company’s or any organisation’s logo can communicate your vision, quality, or unique attribute.
Product Quality Recognition: It recognises the product’s quality. Customers associate product quality with the brand name, and this picture of a particular brand’s quality is formed in the market, which aids in recruiting new customers because they can distinguish product quality by the logo/brand name.
Creation of Asset: Registration of a trademark establishes an intangible asset for an organisation, namely Intellectual Property. A trademark registration creates a legal right that can be sold, assigned, franchised, or commercially contracted. Furthermore, the trademark is an intangible asset that benefits the company.
Use of ® Symbol: When a trademark is registered, you can include the ® sign in your logo to indicate that it is a registered trademark and that no one else can use it. It is devoid of any and all forms of uses and rights. If the trademark is registered and someone else uses it, you can sue the other party.
Infringement Protection: No rival or third party can use the trademark wordmark or logo that you have registered. However, if someone uses it without the owner’s permission or in a dishonest manner, the owner can seek legal protection under the Act and prevent the person from doing so.
Protection for 10 Years at a Reasonable Cost: Online trademark registration is simple and inexpensive. After registering a trademark, you only have to pay the maintenance and renewal fees, which are due after 10 years. It is cost-effective and assists your organisation in developing a distinct image.
Global Trademark Registration: If a trademark is registered in India, it can be used as the basis for registration in other countries. Any company looking to expand outside of India can benefit from a trademark registration in India, as well as the country’s established goodwill.
Attract Human Resources: As a magnate, young minds aspire to work for huge brands. It promotes the organisation’s positive image, making candidates more easily drawn to them. This saves money on hiring and other related expenses.
How to Apply for a Trademark in India?
- To apply for a trademark in India, you will need to submit a complete application form and fee to the Intellectual Property Office of India
- The form can be found on their official website, where you can also find information on how to file a trademark application in your country
- The application form asks you to list the following:
- The type of trademark you plan to register
- The name of the mark, including the word and the abbreviation used
- The goods or services that the mark describes
- The term or term length used
- The geographic location of the mark
- The trademark symbol
- The registration term (if any).
- You will also have to include documentation that includes:
- A design plan for the mark
- The written description of the goods or services you plan to use the mark to describe
- The goods or services that the design is intended to represent
- Copies of all contracts and agreements related to the use of the mark.
How to Register Your Trademark in India?
Trademarks are an essential part of doing business in any country. They protect the use of your brand and prevent others from using the same term or logo to sell counterfeit products.
In India, you cannot register a trademark simply because you think someone else might want to use it. To protect your brand from being used unethically or improperly, you should register your trademark as soon as possible. To help you through the registration process and avoid being sidetracked by unnecessary bureaucracy, we’ll walk you through the steps of trademark registration in India.
- To register a trademark in India, you must first fill out a form called a trademark application
- You can find the template and instructions for the form on the official website of the department of intellectual property and technology, where you can file your trademark application
- You can also download the application and fill it out online
- After you complete the application, you have 60 days to make a submission to the Intellectual Property Office of India, which will then decide if your application should be registered
- If the office decides in your favour, it will issue a notice.
So, What’s Next?
After you’ve applied to register your trademark in India, the next step is to wait for the trademark office to decide if your application should be registered. This can take months or even years. During this time, your product may not be available in any physical form, and you will not be able to use the trademark in any advertisements or promotional material. Moreover, anyone can file a trademark infringement lawsuit, and you will probably have to respond to the allegations.
If the trademark office decides that your application is legitimate, it will issue a notice, which will include the following documents: Your trademark registration card with the registered mark and the date of registration. The Registered TradeMark (Rmt) document. The trademark notice, which is a public document that gives details on the registered mark, including its description, the goods or services it describes, and the term or term length used. A unique identifier for the registered mark.
The Bottom Line
If you own a business, you probably know that your competition is eager to take away your customers with innovative new marketing campaigns and cheaper prices. Even though you may have a great product or service, without an effective name or logo, you will not be able to compete with other businesses in the marketplace.
Trademarks are powerful legal tools that protect specific terms that identify a business. They are always protected by federal law. The protection of a trademark extends beyond the registration process. Trademarks are also one of the most popular ways by which businesses protect their products and services from potential customers.
If you own a business, you probably know that your competition is eager to take away your customers with innovative new marketing campaigns and cheaper prices. Even though you may have a great product or service, without an effective name or logo, you will not be able to compete with other businesses in the marketplace. If you own a small business, having your own trademark may also increase your chances of entering into profitable contracts with suppliers and vendors who need to agree on one single brand name for their company as well as goods sold by them.