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Introduction:

International Trademark Registration is the process of obtaining trademark protection in multiple countries through a single application. The system is governed by the Madrid Protocol, an international treaty that simplifies and streamlines the registration process for trademarks. In this article, we will explore the benefits of International Trademark Registration, the requirements for filing an application, and the potential pitfalls that applicants should be aware of.

Benefits of international trademark registration:

There are many benefits to registering a trademark internationally. Perhaps the most significant advantage is that it allows a company to protect its brand in multiple markets with a single application.

apply in one language and pay one set of fees to apply for trademark protection in multiple territories. Manage your brand portfolio through a centralized system and easily expand your reach to new markets.

Register and manage your trademarks in the Madrid Protocol system regions, which account for more than 80% of global trade.

You may save valuable time and money by submitting just one application instead of accessing a batch of national applications. You also don’t have to pay for a translation or hire a representative in every country.

This can save time and money, as it eliminates the need to file separate applications in each country where protection is desired. Additionally, International Trademark Registration provides the trademark owner with a greater degree of certainty that their mark will be protected, as it is subject to examination by trademark offices in each country where protection is sought.

Another benefit of International Trademark Registration is that it can help to prevent trademark infringement. Once a trademark is registered internationally, it becomes part of the public record and is searchable by potential infringers. This can make it easier to detect and prevent the unauthorized use of a mark, which can help to protect the brand’s reputation and market position.

Eligibility:

(1)  Exclusive Right:

You can file an International Trademark Registration application with the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) if:

  • You are a citizen of Pakistan.
  • You live in Pakistan.
  • You have a genuine and efficient industrial or commercial establishment in Pakistan.

(2)  Primary Trademark:

You must have a valid local trademark registration or a valid local trademark application with the Intellectual Property Office (IPO). This national trademark will be used as the basis for the international application. The International Trademark Registration application must contain the same trademark as the national application or trademark registration, and the list of goods and services listed in the international application must match the underlying mark. In addition, in an international application, the applicant may designate more than one member state of the Madrid Protocol in which the applicant wishes to protect its mark.

(3)  Protection period:

International Trademark Registration granted by the Madrid Protocol are valid for 10 years from the date of registration. However, it is renewable for a further 10 years with his WIPO for the Contracting Parties concerned.

(4)  Submission:

The international application must be filed in the prescribed manner on the prescribed Form MM-2. The filing fee for international applications will be Rs.5000/- through the payment gateway provided for this purpose.

Requirements for Filing an Application:

To file an application for International Trademark Registration, the applicant must first have a registered trademark in their home country. This is known as the “basic” trademark, and it serves as the foundation for the international application. The applicant must then file an international application with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), designating the Madrid Countries where protection is sought.

The International Trademark Registration application must include a description of the goods and services covered by the trademark, as well as a list of the countries where protection is sought. The applicant must also pay a fee, which is based on the number of countries designated in the application.

Once the application is filed, it is examined by the International Bureau of WIPO, which checks to ensure that it complies with the requirements of the Madrid Protocol. If the application is approved, it is forwarded to the trademark offices in each designated country for examination and registration.

Potential Pitfalls:

While International Trademark Registration can offer many benefits, there are also some potential pitfalls that applicants should be aware of. One of the most significant is that the registration process can take longer than filing separate applications in each country. Moreover, this is because each country’s trademark office must examine the application independently, which can result in delays and additional fees.

Another potential pitfall is that International Trademark Registration does not guarantee that the trademark will be protected in every country where protection is sought. If the trademark is found to be invalid or infringing in one country, it may be refused protection in other countries as well. Additionally, some countries have specific requirements or restrictions on the types of marks that can be registered, which can make it more difficult to obtain protection.

If the result is drawn:

International Trademark Registration is a powerful tool for companies that want to protect their brands in multiple markets. By simplifying and streamlining the registration process, the Madrid Protocol has made it easier than ever before to obtain trademark protection in multiple countries. However, applicants should be aware of the potential pitfalls of international registration, including the longer registration process and the possibility of refusal in some countries. By understanding these risks and taking steps to mitigate them, companies can maximize the benefits of International Trademark Registration and protect their brands around the world.

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