Trademark Registration in .
Europe consists of 44 countries. Each country has its own economy. Yet, all of them contribute together to the overall GDP of Europe. There are many business opportunities in Europe, especially for the member nations. Considering the business opportunities and competition, it is essential to get a European trademark. Through trademarks, one can protect their brand and the corporate image altogether. To earn exclusivity for distributions, trademarks play a vital role. Perhaps one of the most important benefits of getting a trademark is that it protects against infringements and provides a legal right to the trademark owner to exercise power and sue the perpetrator.
Once you understand the process, it is quite easy to register a trademark in Europe. To understand how the trademark registration actually works, let us have a look.
European trademark registration services
There are different bodies with which you can register your trademark, depending on the type you are opting for. If you do business in one of the EU countries and intend to get trademark protection in that country only, then you can get your trademark registered at a national level through the national office.
Suppose you intend to do business only in the Netherlands, Belgium and/or Luxemburg. In that case, you should get your trademark registered at Benelux Office for Intellectual Property (BOIP).
If you trade all over the EU, you need to get your trademark registered at European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO).
Types of Trademarks
Types of trademarks in European Union
Company and Individual trademark registration
You can register three kinds of trademarks: individual marks, certification marks, and collective marks.
- Individual trademark: This distinguishes one company from another in terms of the goods and services they offer.
Even though the name says individual trademark, it does not necessarily mean that only an individual or single person can own the trademark; it can be owned by more than one legal person. There can be multiple applicants.
- Collective trademark:This trademark distinguishes a group of companies’ or associations’ goods and services from its competitors.
Only associations of manufacturers, producers, suppliers of services or traders, and legal persons governed by public law can apply for collective marks.
- Certification trademarks:These were introduced at EUIPO on 1 October 2017. Although they have already existed for many years in national systems, they are a new type of trademark at the EU level. These are used to indicate that goods or services comply with a certifying institution or organization; they are a sign of supervised quality.
Any natural or legal person, including institutions, authorities, and bodies governed by public law, may apply for EU certification trademarks provided that such person does not carry on a business involving the supply of goods or services of the kind certified.
How to register a trademark in European Union?
Comprehensive trademark search
Once you are finished finalizing your trademark, you can start the application process by doing a comprehensive search regarding the trademark. This search is critical. It gives you an idea of whether the trademark has been used before or if it is registered. It also tells you if the trademark was rejected before and if it was; on what criterion was it rejected. This saves you a lot of time and effort and, of course, money as well.
Once you are done with the search and are good to go, you can move forward and file your trademark application. This can be done either electronically through the EUIPO’s website, which is generally a lot easier and less costly, or on paper.
There is another option called Fast Track that generally approves applications faster but requires 100% upfront payment.
This is the period where the EUIPO examiner reviews your application. This usually takes around a month. After that period, you will receive a notification about your application regarding any concerns or questions that might have arisen during the examination. The objection can be regarding any issue; your class choice, your wordings etc. After receiving the notification, you will have a month to correct the problem and respond accordingly. Depending on the complexity of the issue, a two-month extension can be granted.
Trademark Bulletin Publication
This is where your trademark gets published in the EU bulletin following the examination. This is usually done for three months and is when your trademark is reviewed by other trademark owners. If others find any infringement, they can file for an opposition. Depending on the strength of the opposition filed, your application can be delayed or rejected altogether. The opposition filed, and its procedures can take up to two years or more. This further puts emphasis on why you should conduct a thorough search before filing an application.
Issuance of Trademark
Your trademark gets approval by the EUIPO once the publication period is over and there has been no opposition filed. A certificate of registration is issued after six months of Trademark Bulletin Publication. Once this happens, you can now use your trademark in Europe.
Different countries require different documentation for trademark registration, sometimes burdening amount of documents, but when it comes to the EU, there are no specific documents required to file a trademark application.
Price of Trademarks
Trademark registration cost in European Union
The cost of registering a trademark depends on the type of application you are filing: A basic application costs around €850 for an individual trademark, €1500 for a collective trademark, and €1500 for a certification trademark. (These costs apply to applications that are done electronically, applications given on paper may vary)
Age of Trademarks
How long does the European trademark last?
A trademark in Europe lasts for 10 years, after which the trademark has to be renewed. The European trademark owner has to keep a check on the date themselves to process the renewal; there is no reminder or notice issued by the EUIPO regarding the renewal. If the owner fails to process the renewal in time, the trademark might be canceled. The owner has to ensure that his trademark is not misused. If there is any issue or dispute, legal action has to be taken. Different attorneys offer trademark services related to monitoring, renewal, and dispute handling.
It is always a good decision to get a trademark registered, especially in the EU. With just one application, you get protection in 27 countries with loads of other trade benefits. The steps are easy. Start by doing a thorough trademark search. Then comes filing an application with EUIPO. After that, there is examination and publication in the EU Trademark Bulletin. Once that is done, you are issued a trademark that will last forever – provided that you renew your trademark every 10 years.
At Trademark International, we provide hassle-free trademark registration services catered to your needs in compliance with the international requirements and standards. Europe’s trademark registration doesn’t have to be complicated, and that’s why Trademark International is here to assist with all of your intellectual property needs.
What to do? How to do it? When to do it? Will it work?
If these are the questions that come to your mind when thinking of registering a trademark, you have come to the right place. We, at Trademark International, answer these questions and more! Offering multiple trademark services, we guarantee client satisfaction. For expert advice and consultation, contact us now!
Frequently Asked Questions
The process for registering a trademark varies from country to country. To file for a trademark in the US, you can file an online application with the USPTO. The USPTO entertains two types of applications: ‘In-use’ and ‘Intent to use’. The online application is known as Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS).
Just like every country has its own registration process, the cost varies as well. Depending on the legal fees and the length of the process, the cost can go up or down. In the US, the price of registering a trademark ranges from $500 to $3000.
You need to file an application which should contain: your name and address, if it’s a business then the type of legal entity it is, details of the trademark, list of goods and services, the details of the class(es).
Yes, you can file for both: a local and an international trademark. Some countries entertain a single application to register a trademark locally as well as internationally.
Yes. It is possible to register a trademark in multiple countries with a single application but it depends on which union the country is part of. You can do this through the Madrid Protocol or EUIPO.
Countries have different laws regarding what can be registered as a trademark. In the US, the types of trademarks that can be registered are slogans, shapes, names, phrases words, images, 3D shapes, holograms, smells, and colors.