Register a Trademark in the European Union2018-09-15T04:50:27+00:00
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Register a Trademark in the European Union

Register a trademark in Canada
Register a trademark in the US
Register a trademark in the UK
Register a trademark in Australia

EU trademark registration is very powerful as it covers all 28 countries-members of the European Union.  If you are planning to expand in the EU, this is one of the trademarks you must consider. EU is also one of the quickest countries to obtain a trademark registration. If your application is filed using Fast-track system, you can be a proud owner of a trademark registration certificate in 3 months.  However, government filing fees are quite high.

Important highlights about the EU registration process:

  • Your trademark is only reviewed on absolute grounds meaning it will only be refused if the mark is descriptive or non-distinctive (when a trademark is not capable of functioning as a trademark)
  • Just like in the UK, your trademark will not be refused if there is a similar mark
  • If you want to prevent a similar trademark from achieving registration, you have to take timely steps and oppose registration of a similar mark
  • No use or specimens of use are required to register a trademark in the EU
  • Trademark registration process is about 3-4 months if everything goes well.
  • Fast-track filing could be used to speed up the registration process.

We work with a few trusted European representatives and associates.

Pricing of Our Packages

The prices are in USD$ for EU fillings

SAIL THROUGH

$395
  • Covers filing your application and reporting the progress all the way to registration. 2 classes included. This is our entry-level package.

ALL IN

$745
  • Covers full trademark registration, including reporting and responding to non-substantive examiner’s objections and free re-filing.

BELLS AND WHISTLES

$1095
  • Covers all aspects of trademark registration, including responding to all examiner’s objections and free re-filing. More free extras.

Details about pricing packages

Government fees are not included in our packages and are extra

Upgrades

Upgrade 1

$350
  • Upgrade “SAIL THROUGH” package to “ALL IN” package

Upgrade 2

$700
  • Upgrade “SAIL THROUGH” package to “BELLS AND WHISTLES” package

Upgrade 3

$350
  • Upgrade “ALL IN” package to “BELLS AND WHISTLES” package

FAQ

What is the difference between a UK and EU trademark?2018-09-19T16:31:00+00:00

A UK trademark only protects you in the UK, which consists of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. There is no protection outside of the UK. A UK trademark is filed in the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO).

A trademark filed in the EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) is called an EU trademark (formerly known as a CTM (Community) trademark).

EU trademark protects you in the 28-member countries of the EU making it a very strong trademark.  Current EU countries are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the UK.

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Who can file a trademark opposition in the EU?2018-09-01T22:02:12+00:00

The opposition procedure can only be started by a party who is the owner or licensee of an earlier trademark. An opposition can be filed against a trademark filed in the EU Intellectual Property Office, or against an international application designating the EU.

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Why is it important to monitor newly filed trademarks in the EU and the UK?2018-09-01T22:08:13+00:00

Trademarks Office in the EU  and the UK will not refuse your trademark if there is a prior filed or previously registered similar trademark.

Instead the Trademarks Office in the EU and the UK only looks at absolute grounds (i.e. if the mark is deception or descriptive, it may be refused).

However, if there is a similar trademark, it will not be refused by the Trademarks Office. Instead, owners of similar trademarks may oppose during the 3-month opposition window in the EU and during the 2 month opposition period in the UK.

One of the main reasons one may file an opposition is confusion with an earlier trademark. Opposition proceedings offer an owner of an earlier trademark the right to oppose the registration of a trademark that could endanger his/her business.

By monitoring the EU Intellectual Property Office database or the UK Intellectual Property Database, you will ensure that you will timely see newly filed EU / UK trademarks and will be in a position to oppose in time. Ask us about the monitoring service.

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What is a cooling off period in a trademark opposition?2018-09-01T22:03:44+00:00

In the European Union, cooling off period is set by the Trademarks Office once the opposition has been received and assuming it is admissible.

The purpose of the cooling off period is to allow parties to negotiation a settlement agreement.

An initial cooling off period is 2 months, but can be requested to a maximum of 24 months.

When the cooling-off period has expired and if no agreement has been reached by the parties, the litigation part of the proceedings begins. Most oppositions are settled as it’s cheaper than to proceed with a full-blown opposition.

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In which language can you apply for an EU trademark?2018-09-01T22:00:17+00:00

Trademark applications can be filed in any EU official language.

A second language, different from the first language, can be chosen from the following: English, French, Spanish, German or Italian.

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Do I have to use my trademark in the European Union prior to filing? Do I have to use my trademark after registration?2018-08-04T22:50:54+00:00

In the EU, no use is required in order to file an application. Just like in the UK, you don’t need to specify any dates of first use or to indicate if the mark is in use. No use is required to obtain a trademark registration.

To maintain your trademark, it must be put to “genuine use in the European Community” within 5 years of registration. If the trademark has not been used, without a very good reason, for five years or more, then the registration may be cancelled. Furthermore, Community trademarks that do not meet the new standard for “genuine use in the Community” may be converted to national trademarks of a Member State if they meet the requirements for that Member State.

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Can I use my trademark if it isn’t registered?2018-08-04T22:14:41+00:00

It’s perfectly legal for you to use your trademark without registration. However, if you are using a trademark that is similar to another name that was adopted before you adopted your trademark, you may be liable for trademark infringement.

To minimize the risk of choosing a trademark that’s similar to another name, you should do a trademark search of the Trademark Office database of the country where you plan to use your brand  and of the marketplace (check on Internet for similar names usage).

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How long is a trademark opposition process?2018-08-13T15:47:02+00:00

In different countries trademark opposition process is different.

In the US, trademark opposition period is only 30 days, so you have to be pretty fast if you plan to oppose.

In Canada, one has to file a trademark opposition within a 2-month period.

In the UK, an opposition period is 2 months but can be requested to 3 months upon a request made by a party that intends to oppose.

In the European Union, a notice of opposition must be filed within 3 months following the publication.

In Australia, the opposition period is 3 months from the date of publication.

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In what color should you file your logo in the European Union?2018-08-04T12:42:25+00:00

If you are filing a logo in the European Union, filing in black and white will not allow you to use your logo in any color, unlike the US and Canada. Marks that are registered in black and white but used in color may be vulnerable to cancellation if the owner of the trademark does not prove genuine use of the trademark “as registered”. It means that the logo trademark has to be filed in the color that it will be used (and not in black and white unless the owner plans to use the logo in black and white).

Full rules with detailed questions and answers can be reviewed here: European Common Practice.

If you are thinking of filing a new trademark application, you may want to file two applications: one in black and white to cover all color combinations if you ever need to bring a proceeding before a National Court that has not implemented European Common Practice and one in a particular color that you use to comply with European Common Practice.  As us about a special discount for a black and white and color logo (if filed at the same time).

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How long does it take to register a trademark?2018-08-13T16:20:52+00:00

It takes a minimum of 8 months to register trademark in the US. If there are office actions (objections from the Trademarks Office), then registration will be delayed. It’s not uncommon for a registration to take a year or longer.

It takes 20 months to register a trademark in Canada. It’s painfully slo-o-ow. Don’t ask us why. We don’t know the answer. We feel your pain though. Hopefully, once Canada joins Madrid protocol things will improve.

You will have to wait for about 7.5 months to register a trademark in Australia.

In the European Union, the registration process is about 6-7 months. Not so bad, but the government fees are very high. If your application is filed using “fast-track” method, then the whole process may take about 4-5 months.

The winner is the United Kingdom, where it takes about 4 months from filing to registration. Added bonus is low government fees.

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How long are trademarks valid for?2018-08-04T12:51:27+00:00

Trademarks can last forever if they are renewed on time. Keep in mind you will have to continue using your trademark to keep it in good standing.

In the US, you must renew your trademark every 10 years. In addition, between the 5th and 6th year after the registration date, you must file an “affidavit of use” to keep the registration alive.

In Canada, a trademark has to be renewed every 15 years (the renewal period will be changed to 10 years soon).

In Australia, European Union and the United Kingdom, you have to renew your trademark every 10 years.

 

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Articles

Register a trademark in Canada
Register a trademark in the US
Register a trademark in the UK
Register a trademark in Australia
Anita photo

Anita Mar
CEO and Registered Trademark Agent at Trademark Angel Inc.

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