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Everything about Trademark Objection

Online Legal India LogoBy Online Legal India Published On 02 Aug 2020 Updated On 10 Jan 2023 Category Trademark

A trademark establishes an identity for a brand or company and distinguishes it from other products or services available in the market. Protecting the trademark is a crucial factor in order to maintain the distinct nature of the brand. But you need to know that someone might stop you from claiming your right. You need to understand the idea of trademark objection.

What is Trademark Objection?

Trademark objection takes place in the initial stages of trademark registration process. Due to some specific reasons the trademark examiner objects to the trademark application. It does not mean that the registrar straight deny you claim but he seeks valid reasons and explanation behind the trademark. He provides an opportunity to the applicant to explain how the trademark fits the required criteria to avail the registration. This is known as trademark objection reply.

There are basically two reasons for which a trademark application might get rejected:

  • Contains incomplete or wrong information
  • Similar or identical trademarks already exist

Errors behind Trademark Objection

A trademark application must be free from any errors and false information. The application must be completely correct and if there is any wrong information like wrong applicant name, incorrect business place etc it is likely to raise objection.

  1. Incorrect details in the application form: The registrar raises an objection if there is any false information regarding applicant name, business place name or anything else.
  2. Wrong trademark form filling: The examiner can raise objection if the application is filed in the incorrect form. If a trademark attorney or an agent files your application form then form TM-48 must be filed and attached with the application.

 Grounds on which Objections Raised

A trademark application can be objected for refusal under more than one ground. Here we will discuss about the grounds on which the trademark application can be objected.

The refusal grounds of TM application are divided into two categories-

  • Absolute grounds of refusal- It refers to the inability of the marks to be distinctive or graphically presented.
  • Relative grounds of refusal- it is usually connected with previous trademarks and the related rights.
  1. Deceptive marks: If a trademark spurs confusion for the public or misleads the public, are deceptive as they seem similar. It is about the real source of the product or description between related products or services, the use, quality or character.
  2. Lack of distinctiveness: A trademark does not receive approval if it lacks the distinctiveness and thus creates a dilemma amongst the public in order to identify the products and services.
  3. Existence of an identical Trademark: Objection will be raised if your trademark resembles with an already existing trademark. It is better to do a little research in order to find if someone else is already using the trademark.. The aim is to avoid creating confusion in the consumers.
  4. False specification of products or services: It is wrong to file a trademark application under an incorrect class or false description and eventually it will lead to objections.
  5. Offensive and obscene words in a trademark: A trademark application will be refused if it contains any obscene or offensive word it.

How to reply to the examination report?

Once you receive the report, you have to provide a description in detail stating the reasons to justify your trademark name. You have to inform how the trademark fulfills the requirements of a valid mark. It has to be done within 30 days or else the mark will be invalid. These are the reasons the application must be filed sincerely.

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Anjali Malhotra


Anjali Malhotra