Trademark Objection in India

Trademark is a kind of IPR, which gives an exclusive right for the person or the business who registered their trademark. To exploit such mark to distinguish their goods and services from others which indirectly gains identity and reputation results in goodwill. Such registration of trademark also restrict others from using such trademark and gives right to sue and get compensation for the act of infringement.

But the registration process is quite complex in nature. Once the application is submitted for registration, it needs to cross various fire rings, the important hurdle is the examination conducting by the trademark officer. If the trademark does not satisfy the distinctiveness and other criteria which expressed by the Trademark act, 1999 won’t get published in the journal for completion of registration of process. The officer can raise objections in case any criteria are not fulfilled. So such acceptance of the trademark officer after the examination acts as a condition precedent for the registration.

The reason for Trademark objection can be many either regarding the documents filed or regarding the fulfillment of criteria mandate by the statue and rules. The first one i.e. regarding the documents which will be some mistakes made in the application or the documents submitted such things needs to rectify as per the procedure established. The second one i.e. regarding the trademark statue and rules, which expressly restrains the registration of the trademark on basis of two ground absolute and relative grounds.

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The absolute grounds were expressed in s.9 of Trademark act, 1999, which expresses in case the proposed trademark fails in the distinctive nature i.e. on failure to distinguish the trademark from other person trademark or business. The Proposed trademark which consists of any exclusive mark or identification which served in trade of goods or services like quantity, geographical origin etc. If the trademark consists of any marks or identifications which now been in customary practices. If the trademark is about to cause confusion to the public or to hurt the religious feelings or having anything prohibited by law or having obscene matters or consist of shapes expresses the nature of goods or technical results or value will be objected by the trademark officer.

The Relative grounds were expressed in s.11 of the act, which expresses that if the trademark which about to cause confusion to the public because it is similar or identical to another trademark. In case the trademark which may violate the law of passing off or copyright can be restricted and objected. In case the trademark resembles the trademark which registered under conventional application on which India is a party to the treaty, can be objected. Once the objection was made by the trademark officer, the applicant needs to respond in a month, on failing lead to rejection of the application. And the response should satisfy the officer in failure to do so, results the same. On rejection can approach the Intellectual property appellate board. Once the response satisfied the officer, he will order for the publication of the trademark in the journal and it is subjected to welcome opposition by the third party which should be done within 4 month of such publishing. On passing of 4 months without any opposition the trademark will be registration and certificate of registration will be issued.

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