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UK Trademark Registration Process: Step One
First, you have to check if you can register your trademark. Your trademark must be unique and distinctive for the goods and services you provide. It can include words, logos, colors, and even sounds, as well as their combination.
You can`t register your trademark if it is offensive, describes the goods or services it will relate to, if it`s misleading, for example, use the word ‘organic’ for goods that are not organic or too common and non-distinctive, or if it looks too similar to state symbols or names and abbreviations of international inter-governmental organizations.
You can also register collective and certification trademarks. A certification mark meets a certain standard. It is registered as a rule, in the name of government departments, trade associations, etc. A collective mark indicates that the goods or services under this mark originate from a trade association member.
2 Second, you should check if the similar or identical trademark is already registered in the same or similar class of goods or services. It could be done using a database before sending your application to The Intellectual Property Offices of the United Kingdom. You can use a trademark expert or attorney to help you with this search.
Third, you should classify the goods and services of your trademark.
The UK Intellectual Property Office uses the Nice classification. This system consists of 45 different classes of goods and services. Goods are in classes 1 to 34, and services are in classes 35 to 45. The heading of each class is just a general indication. It does not include all the goods or services in that class.
Your trademark will get the protection for the goods and/or services you select only. That’s make so important your choice. You have no chance to add extra goods or services after you have applied. A registered trademark is valid within 10 years, so you have to think about what goods or services you will sell in the future.
Fourth, Application to the UK Intellectual Property Office. You have to point out in your application: your personal data, details of your trademark, the classes of goods and services you want to register your trademark in.
You can also make series applications if you have similar versions of your trademark for up to six marks. They all must look, sound, and mean almost the same, with minimum differences. You can`t change your trademark after application; besides, the fees are non-refundable. The registration process takes about 4 months if there are no objects.
Fifth, publication in the trademarks journal. You will get the examination report in up to 12 weeks. If the UK Intellectual Property Office has no objections, they will publish your application in the trademarks journal for 2 months. Within this period, anyone can oppose it.
The Intellectual Property Office will inform you if someone opposes your application. In this case, you can withdraw or defend your application. You cannot register your trademark until this problem is solved.
UK Trademark Registration Process: Step Six
Sixth, registration. If nobody has objected to it, the Intellectual Property Office will register your trademark approximately two weeks after the opposition period ends. You will get a certificate to confirm this. Just remember, your trademark is protected in the UK only.
From that moment, you can object to other people’s trademarks, if they are identical or similar to yours, you can market, sell, license, and mortgage your trademark. Your trademark will last 10 years and you can renew it after that time.
Cost of trademark registration in the UK
A single online trademark application covering one class will cost £170. Extra classes cost an additional £50 per class. The same application covering three classes will cost £270:
- £170 for the application and first-class;
- £100 for the two extra classes (£50 each).