Nowadays, with production and business developing strongly, a trademark will be a distinct sign that makes people remember the products and services of each individual or business. So when you want to register for trademark protection, do you need to research that trademark to avoid duplicates or similarities that confuse? In the following article, Viet An Law Firm will present how to research figurative trademarks in Vietnam, or more specifically, the figurative element in trademark registration.
Pursuant to Clause 16, Article 3 of the Intellectual Property Law: “A trademark is a sign used to distinguish goods and services of different organizations and individuals.”
Trademarks can be expressed in the form of letters, words, drawings, images, including three-dimensional images, or a combination of such elements, expressed in one or more colors. The color element is indispensable for labels because of its advantages in impressing human vision, thereby helping the trademark perform its distinguishing function.
Currently, Vietnam is using the Vienna Classification table: A hierarchical system used to classify image elements of a trademark into Categories – Divisions – Sections based on the shape of the elements.
Search trademarks before filing if you find identical or likelihood of confusion of trademarks. Especially in cases where the registered trademark only has figurative marks, without other elements such as words or three dimensions, a search using the Vienna Classification is indispensable. This information will allow the submitter to make appropriate decisions. It is important to identify identical or confusing trademarks:
If the trademark is identical or confusing but registered for unrelated goods/services, you may decide to continue with the registration. Similarly, if the trademark that is the subject of the application has been refused or the registration has expired, you can also continue with the registration process.
Sections include Principle Sections and Auxiliary Sections:
According to the provisions of the Vienna Agreement, the Competent Authorities of the countries signing the Vienna Agreement must clearly state in official documents and publications related to the figurative Classification of marks, specifically the categories, divisions, and sections of the figurative elements of the trademark.
The Vienna Classification is a hierarchical system, dividing elements into “Categories”, “Divisions” and “Sections”. Each category, division, and section is assigned a number according to a special coding system. Each figurative element in a section is represented by three digits: the first digit may be any number from 1 to 29, representing the respective category; the second digit can be any number from 1 to 19, representing the respective division; and the third digit can be any number from 1 to 30, representing the section. Each level is separated by a dot. For example: 03.01.09; 08.03.08;…
When searching, the searcher will enter the hierarchy of the corresponding figurative element in the Classification table according to the structure of 2 – 4 – 6 digits, however entering 6 digits is more common due to the element information. The more detailed the image, the closer the displayed results will be to the mark. Information related to trademarks with the same figurative element. For example, when looking up a trademark with the following figurative elements:
To check the protection ability of a trademark, clients can do it themselves by accessing the online industrial property database of the National Office of Intellectual Property or the World Intellectual Property Organization to research.
Step 1: Access the search database of the Vietnam Intellectual Property Office: http://wipopublish.ipvietnam.gov.vn/
Select Trademark -> Advanced Lookup -> In the Classification section, select the Vienna Classification field to search by this field.
Step 2: Enter the trademark information to research.
For trademarks intended or about to be registered for protection
Searchers need to pay attention to the following fields:
For registered trademark searches
In addition to the fields mentioned above, we need to add some fields below to make the research faster:
Step 3: Click “Research”. See the results displayed.
WIPO’s global database allows you to search for trademarks registered under the Madrid system and domestic regime, names of origin registered under the Lisbon system, and symbols protected under Article 6 of the Paris Convention. Several national trademark databases are also integrated into this database. Through this facility, it is possible to:
The steps to research figurative trademarks on WIPO’s website are as follows:
Step 1: Access the access link: https://branddb.wipo.int/
After accessing, select BY BRAND LOGO.
Step 2: Enter the information to research
Other information fields can be entered if there is data such as:
The more detailed the information, the closer the displayed results will be to the sample. Then select SEARCH to start looking up.
Step 3: If you want to research more specifically about similar trademark samples, you can continue to perform the following operations: Select TOOLS -> VIENNA CLASSIFICATION ASSISTANT. Then drop the image or drawing you want to research into the box according to regulations to be able to research more specifically about the image elements.
Profound research is a completely voluntary procedure on the part of the applicant. However, this procedure should be carried out because this is the first and most important step to evaluate whether a trademark should apply for protection or not.
However, the trademark search is only for reference and is not a basis for granting or not granting a certificate (partly related to priority rights when registering a trademark).
01 trademark model with the size of each component in the trademark not larger than 80mm and not smaller than 8mm. The entire trademark must be presented in a trademark template with dimensions of 80mm x 80mm.
Through the service of Viet An Law Firm, it takes 5 – 7 working days.
A trademark will usually consist of 2 parts: the word and the figurative mark. The fix can be done in the following way:
Industrial property representative – Viet An Law Firm is ready to provide services related to industrial property registration, trademark registration, and trademark research to support you, please contact us. to receive the best advice.
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