Author - Associate Runa Jasia
Trademark is a word, a group of words or a symbol legally registered or established by use as representing a company or product.
It is a recognizable design, sign or expression that identifies products or services provided of a particular source from those of others, though trademarks that are used to identify services are usually called service marks. It can be a logo, design, name, etc. It helps in identifying the business name in a concise form. There are business owner and company who did copy the trademark of many famous companies around the globe.
That’s why it is essential to register the trademark of the company. Many Startup companies don’t give it much attention in regards to brand, logo or designs. But it can become a disastrous step towards their company. Every organization wants to avoid a costly, lengthy, and resource-intensive lawsuit for trademark infringement. But what if the business owner has no money left to hire a lawyer? What if the business owner wants to do it by himself? In the official website of Controller General of Patents, Designs, and Trade Marks www.ipindia.nic, they mention:
The Trade Marks Registry, established in India in 1940, presently administers the Trade Marks Act, 1999, and the rules thereunder. It is a resource and information center and a facilitator in matters relating to trademarks in the country as well. The primary objective of the Trade Marks Act, 1999, is to register trademarks that citizens apply for in the nation and to provide for better protection of the trademark for their goods and services and also to prevent fraudulent use or misuse of the mark. The primary function of the Registry is to register a trademark which qualifies for registration under the Act and Rules. They provide every information regarding the filing of a trademark in India.
Steps to file for the trademark without consulting a lawyer:
1. Design a logo and name
Before filing, the business owner should have the designed logo of their company. The owner can search for the logo/trademark online or can hire a logo designer available in the market for designing the logo of their company. They will make the trademark selection and can suggest different designs which will not match with any other company around the world. It is vital to keep a unique design and name as well so that in future nobody can claim your trademark. Before making any trademark/logo, one has to register their business name. It is mandatory to register the business name to do so. An image of the brand name/trademark is required.
2. Applying for the registration process
Before going further one has to make a file providing relevant documents in it such as business name, owner name, date, etc. The person can do the filing of their trademark either offline or by online mode. They have to fill the required application. There are five trademark registry offices in India. A person can file a document at the appropriate office of the Trade Marks Registry.
3. Documents required for registration of Trademarks
• Name of the person who is applying for the trademark
• Submission of Power of Attorney
• Required signature
• Place of business or an address of a person who has filed the application
• Date and Place of filing
• Valid email ID
4. In case of an Individual
As mentioned on the official website in detail:
• The full name of the applicant is necessary. A business name or trading style is unacceptable as the name of an individual. This is because a business name or trading style does not denote the nature of the applicant (legal entity) - it is more of an alias for the purpose of a trademark application. If a trading style or business, the name is included on the form along with the name of an individual applicant, such details will be captured separately.
• Applicants should submit their applications in the relevant prescribed forms given by the Trade Marks Rules 2002.
• The representation must exhibit all the features of the trademark clearly, be suitable for reproduction and be of a great quality which ensures all the features of the trademark will be preserved over time.
• As far as practicable, the applicant should specify the goods and services for which registration is sought in terms appearing in the Classification as published by the Registrar. These listings are available through Trade Marks Registry or on website www.ipindia.nic.in. The Hearing Officer may accept the application for registration, or he may receive the application with a condition as to use of the trademark or limitation as to the area of trade, as he thinks fit; or he may propose the application to be advertised before acceptance.
• Once an application for registration of a trademark has been accepted whether absolutely or subject to conditions or limitations or it is even ordered to be advertised before acceptance, the application is accordingly advertised in the trademark journal along with conditions or restrictions, if any.