Trademark protection is relevant for all businesses – although they may be more important if your business is public (commonly business to customer rather than business to business); or depends on volume.
A business may trademark its brand name, domain name and any distinctive mark that it trades with or is associated with. Registered trademarks are valuable because of the goodwill associated with the mark; and established brands create value by licensing the use of their trademarks; and this can add value to a start-up looking to attract investment.
What Is a Trademark?
A trademark is a recognizable insignia, phrase, word, or symbol that denotes a specific product and legally differentiates it from all other products of its kind.
A trademark exclusively identifies a product as belonging to a specific company and recognizes the company’s ownership of the brand.
Similar to a trademark, a service mark identifies and distinguishes the source of a service rather than a product, and the term “trademark” is often used to refer to both trademarks and service marks. Trademarks are generally considered a form of intellectual property.
Period of Registration
- A trademark registration is valid for ten years counting from the date of filing in the territory of Pakistan.
- The registration can be renewed for an unlimited number of successive ten year periods. In principle, a trademark can be protected for ever.
Why Is Trademark Registration Important?
You should have your trademark registered as soon as possible with Trade Marks Registry of Intellectual Property Organization of Pakistan (IPO-Pakistan)
Trademark registration will help you if you face legal challenges. If you register your trademark, you will need to do a comprehensive search to make sure you’re not infringing on the mark of another company. Otherwise, you could face major legal risks.
Benefits of Registration
- Ownership of your Trademark
- If you own it, you can sell it or gift it.
- It shows up in you balance sheet
- It allows you the right to use it anywhere in the country
- Legal Protection against infringement
Requirements for filing Trade/Service Mark applications;
- Full name, nationality/Description/State of incorporation, trading style (if any), profession and full business address of the applicant.
- List of goods/services in respect of which registration is sought for. Separate applications will have to be filed for goods/services falling in different classes. Multi-class application cannot be filed.
- Translation of non-English words appearing on the mark.
- In case of device/label marks, 15 prints thereof.
- First date of use of the mark in Pakistan, if used.
- Power of Attorney duly signed by the applicant at two places before a Notary Public.
Pakistan follows International Classification of Goods and Services and is a member of Paris Convention.
- Trademark Search
- Trademark Registration
- Trademark Renewal, Opposition
- drafting, assignment, post registration matters
- general queries regarding Trademark
Procedure for Registration of Trademark?
- It is advisable that a search may be made of the Trademarks Register to ensure whether there are any similar or identical marks on the Register. Search request can be filed with a Pay Order / Bank Draft of prescribed fee for search of one mark in one class only.
- After the search of the Register, application is made for one mark in one class with pay order / Bank Draft of prescribed fee.
- Acknowledgement Receipt by the Trade Mark Registry is issued to the applicant within 10-15 days.
- Examination Report is generated after 3 months. If there are any objections on the applied trademark, they are communicated to the applicant immediately in the form of Show Cause.
Notice: The applicant is required to submit a reply within two months of the issue of Show Cause Notice.
If there are no objections application is published in the Trade Mark Journal.
If no oppositions are filed to the published application within two months of the publication date of the relevant Trademark Journal, the application stands accepted, and Demand Notice is then issued to the applicant requesting him/her to submit registration fee so that the registration Certificate may be issued.
After the payment of the Registration fee, the Registration Certificate is issued.