Registration of trademark in the EU

February 5, 2021
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A legal entity or an individual, regardless of the direction of activity, is granted the right to patent (register) and further use a trademark, own brand or logo.

Key benefits of registering a product brand

  • Ensuring trademark protection
  • Emergence of an asset
  • Protection from pressure and operations of competitors
  • Defining and establishing clear boundaries of your rights
  • Prevention of fraudulent transactions and trademark counterfeiting

The main advantages of registering a trademark in the EU

  • Unified registration procedure. The application is submitted online in one language and is valid for all countries with the status of a member of the Union.
  • The EU trademark grants its owner the right to use it and promote products in all current and future countries that have the status of members of the Union at a reasonable cost.
  • An entrepreneur will be able to promote his trademark in a market with more than 500 million consumers.
  • The EU trademark has a validity period of 10 years. After the expiration of the term, the mark can be extended for an unlimited period with subsequent renewals every 10 years.

The EU establishes a system of registration of marks, consisting of 4 levels. Your choice will be entirely based on the needs of your business.

If you need protection in one of the EU member states, where your business is currently based or where you plan to trade, then you will proceed according to the following scheme. You will be able to apply for the registration of your trademark with the appropriate national institution regulating intellectual property. This is an example of action at the national level.

In the event that you need protection in the Netherlands, Luxembourg or Belgium, then you can apply to the Benelux Intellectual Property Office. It is the only regional institution regulating intellectual property in the Union, designed to protect trademarks in the three countries listed.

If you need protection within a larger number of EU member states, then you should apply to EUIPO.

The systems at the national, regional and all-Union (EU) level are complementary to each other and operate in parallel. Those entrepreneurs who do not need trademark protection at the level of the entire European Union need national and regional trademarks.

Moreover, one more way to obtain protection is international. You can get international trademark protection in any of the countries that have signed the Madrid Protocol.

The owner of the EU exclusive registered trademark is granted the following rights

  1. Apply the trademark within all states that have membership in the European Union.
  2. To prohibit the use of a registered brand or a sufficiently similar (analogous) mark within all or some individual EU states.
  3. Allow the use of the mark by third parties in accordance with the obtained license in the territory of the EU countries.

Today there are 2 options for registering a trade logo in the EU. The first is to register the EU brand through the Office for Harmonization of the Internal Market or OHIM.

To do this, you will need to contact a person who is a patent attorney of any of the states of the Union and has such a status that would be officially confirmed. The attorney prepares the necessary package of documents and sends them for verification and registration to the European Bureau. In general, the registration procedure can take 7-9 months, if there are no objections to patenting from third parties.

If at least one state rejects the registration of your brand on its territory, the trademark becomes invalid in the entire EU. In such a situation, all previously made payments by you are non-refundable.

To avoid such an outcome, design and create a unique trade logo that has no analogues on the market.

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