What is a Trademark?
Trademarks in India are governed by the Trade Marks Act, 1999. A trademark is a sign, mark, logo, device, symbol etc, which is used to distinguish the goods of one manufacturer from that of another. It may also include the style of packing the goods, or the shape of the good which is being manufactured or any combination of colors, alphabets etc.
Although not mandatory but it is essential to get a trademark registered in order to protect it from being copied or used by another manufacturer. It would affect the goodwill and the sales of the business drastically.
Registration of Trademark:
™– is used for a trademark which is unregistered
®– is used for the trademark which is registered with the government
℠ – is used for an unregistered service trademark
Once the registration process is complete, only then the person is allowed to use R next to its logo or design. Some of the examples of a trademark are:
Alteration of Trademark once it is registered?
The alteration of Trademark is given under Section 59 which lays down the following conditions for the alteration of Trademark:
- If the public search for the trademark has to be done again then the alteration will not be allowed by the ministry
- It is allowed in case the name of the business is to be changed
- It is allowed In case the address of the Business is to be changed
- It is allowed If any new license registration has been taken or given up
- It is allowed if there is any change in the usage and control which arises mostly in case of a collective trademark
No alteration can be done in the following cases:
- The trademark as a whole cannot be changed. It will be covered under a new trademark application
- The list of goods and services included in the trademark can be limited but they cannot be extended
Procedure to alter the trademark (as per the trademark rules 2017):
- Any change in the making, expunging, or varying of any entry related to the trademark or a collective trademark will be made in the form TM – O
- Along with this form, there will be a statement declaring all the facts of the case, as to why it is being changed, the details and the reasons behind the change
- If the application is made by a person who is not a registered user of the trademark, then he will have to submit the application to the Trademark Registry
- The application will first be forwarded to all the people who are registered users of the Trademark in order to take their consent (if any)
- The registrar will then serve the application to each of the registered users within 1 month and will wait for another one month, just in case there are any more queries
- If no counter attacks come within 3 months of the service, the alteration will be done as per section 98 of the trademark rules, 2017
- If in case any query comes up it will be served to the original applicant for answers within one month of the service to the user he will have to defend the alteration and its necessity. After all the queries are satisfied, the alteration will be complete
- If there is any change in the registered office address of the business, then a form TM – P will be filed to the registrar
- Once the application is made in form TM – P, the registrar will publish the application in the journal for the public, in case no query is received the alteration will be done. In case a query comes, it has to be resolved before the final alteration is sanctioned by the registrar.