It is a common belief that legal actions can be taken even if the registration is not done. It is true to some extent, but the law always favors those brands that have got them registered. The reason being the registration of marks is always primary evidence when any case of infringement comes up.
How to get your logo registered in India?
As stated earlier, registration of a brand logo is relatively easy and straightforward. By following the steps given below, you can protect your brand logo.
STEP 1: LOGO OR BRAND SEARCH
The first step is to conduct a thorough search to check whether the logo you want to register has no twin in the industry or the trademark class. This will save you from further hassle, which you might have to go through in the future. If this step is carried out properly, no other registered brand can oppose the mark claiming it to be deceptively similar.
We say this stage is essential because the amount of time you invest at this point will help you save the rest of the time in the further process making it easy and objection-free.
Therefore, it is always better to be sure before applying that your brand logo is unique, different, and has no competition in the market.
STEP-2: FILING OF LOGO APPLICATION (TRADEMARK APPLICATION):
Once you are assured that your logo has no other logo to be similar, you can go ahead and apply by filling out the form TM-A with all the required details and fees prescribed.
STEP-3: UPLOAD THE REQUIRED DOCUMENTS AND FORMALITY CHECK:
Once the form is filled, you will be directed to the next step. You will have to upload the documents relating to your address proof, power of attorney, and most importantly, the design of the logo you want to get protection for.
FORMALITY CHECK: After the documents are uploaded, the ministry will run a formality check, and in case of any discrepancy, it will issue formality check fail status wherein the applicant will be given a chance for modification of the application and once everything is clear, the application will move for examination stage.
The checklist for the required documents is given below.
STEP 4: EXAMINATION OF APPLICATION:
Once the application is filed and documents are uploaded, the Registrar/ Examiner will scrutinize the application and prepare an examination report. The report can have two of the findings:
- The application is accepted and can be published in the journal. The application is rejected on either absolute grounds or relative grounds (section 9 or section 11).
Based on the report, the examiner will require the applicant to file a reply to the examination report stating the grounds as to why the mark has to be registered in case of the second option.
On being convinced by the reply, the Registrar will either accept the application or reject it again.
Upon being accepted, the logo will be published in the journal for calling out public objections.
STEP 5: OPPOSITIONS FROM PUBLIC:
Once the logo is published, the common public is free to call for opposition within four months of publication in the journal. Once the opposition is filed, notice will be sent to the applicant, who has to file the reply to notice within one month from the notice’s date. At this stage, evidence will also be submitted, and the matter will be posted for hearing.
STEP 6: HEARING:
The Registrar will set a date for the hearing, and the parties have to present for the same. The opportunity of the hearing will be given for both the parties and then the Registrar will decide upon the matter.
STEP 7: REGISTRATION:
Once the Registrar is satisfied that the mark is capable of being registered, it will accept the application and issue a certificate of registration. The same will be entered in the registry and published on the website.
|Drafting, filing, and uploading of application with documents||2-3 days|
|Formality check.||2-3 working days|
|Reply to formality check.||Within 30 days from the date of issue of notice|
|Formality check pass.||5-7 working days|
|Examination.||10-15 working days|
|Reply to the examination report.||Within 30 days from the date of issue of notice|
|Opposition to the advertisement.||Within 4 months from the date of issue of notice|
|Reply to the opposition.||Within 60 days from the date of issue of notice|
|Filing of rejoinders||Within 60 days from the date of issue of notice|
|Total time taken||6-8 months|
Checklist of documents required:
- Copy of logo
- Address proof
- Name and details of the applicant
- Name and details of the attorney (if any)
- Power of attorney
- Signed form 48
Details of the business- sole proprietor/ partnership/ LLP/ Company etc and related documents.