The European Union established the practice of filing a unified trademark and Design for the entire European Union in 1996, and since then it has been a popular and logical option for international companies seeking to protect their trademarks and product design in Europe.
Protecting your trademarks and designs in Europe can be an easy, efficient, and cost friendly process by filing a European Union Trade mark – EUTM – (or “CTM” until March 2016), or a Registered Community Design (“RCD”) and defending it through an authorized representative before the European Union Intellectual Property Office – EUIPO – (or “OHIM” until March 2016) against oppositions (in the case of EU trademarks) or cancellation actions filed by third parties or refusals of protection issued by the EUIPO.
Our lawyers can also help you to extend your national trademark or Designs internationally through the Madrid System (WIPO)
EU Trade marks and designs are effective in all countries that are part of the European Union with the filing of one application, as opposed to filing separate applications in each country. This provides a cost-effective and quick way to ensure complete protection in the European Union. Even further, once an EUTM or a RCD is filed, any additional member state that is added to the European Union during the ten-year period is automatically added as an extension of the existing EUTM / RCD.
The EU Trademark and Design system
Each European Union Trade Mark is valid for ten years and may be renewed indefinitely, while each European registered design (Registered community Design – “RCD”) is valid for 5 years, and may be renewed up to 25 years.
EU Trade marks and the Madrid System (WIPO)
Agents typically make applications through the EUIPO, but the EUTM can also be designated as part of the so-called Madrid application. The fees for an international application under the Madrid System may vary according to the number of designated countries, while the EUIPO fees remain static as it is a unitary trade mark right valid in the entire European Union.
If based on its trademark strategy, a company chooses to designate a EUTM as part of an international registration (Madrid system), then it may need a professional representative before the EUIPO to defend its European designation against possible administrative objections regarding classification, refusals based on lack of distinctiveness / descriptiveness of the sign or third party oppositions raised during the registration process before the EUIPO.
Lawyers at IP Wisely can offer you an accurate cost prediction to defend European Union Trade Mark applications (including WIPO/ Madrid System designations) until the final registration
Services related to EUTM filing in the European Union:
- Clearance search: we will conduct a detailed and thorough search of the national and community trademark registries to determine if there are any identical or similar trademarks that might present an obstacle in successfully registering a community trademark.
- Application for registration: we will file and process your trademark application with the EUIPO. This registration will be valid in all countries within the European Union. After we successfully complete an application for registration, we will keep the registration valid by filing appropriate documents and ensuring that fees are paid in a timely fashion.
- Post-registration watch services/Customs registration: Once your trademark right has been secured, we will activate a national or multi-jurisdictional watch service, in order to detect and tackle possible identical or similar applications which may cause confusion with your brand. We can also register your trademark with EU Customs authority, to ensure conterfeit goods infringing your brand will be detected, blocked and destroyed.
The three functions of the trademark are as follows:
- Identify the origins of goods and services
- Guarantee consistent quality
- Form of communication and basis for publicity an advertising
For more information on the importance of Trademark & Design protection in Europe email us at email@example.com