When companies locate their headquarters or factories abroad, they may want to register their trademarks there, too. That way, if the business grows, it can register its new mark only with the government agency that handles foreign registrations.
If you own an international trademark, you may need to file an international trademark application. But how to file an international trademark application? Here are some things you need to know.
What Is An International Trademark Application?
An international trademark application is a request for registration of a mark in a foreign country with the authority managing the registration process in that country. The filing of an international trademark application does not mean you will register your mark in that country. Rather, it is the first step in the process of securing registration in that country.
The application must include:
- Your physical address, including the postal code
- Your contact information, including phone number, email address, and mailing address
- A brief description of the goods and services you will offer, including the geographic location of your business
- The trademark(s) you will use to distinguish your goods and services from others
- The filing date
- The reserve period
- The termination date
How To File An International Trademark Application
File your application in your home country. From there, you will need to submit it to the authorities in the country where you plan to establish your business. You can contact the local trademark office to find out the address. You can check what other international trademark services offer too.
When your application is complete, you will need to pay a filing fee. You can either pay the fee in cash or have the money sent to the office.
Activities during which you’ll need to demonstrate your trademark eligibility include:
- Your business name, including the trademark(s) you will use
- Your business address
- Your phone number, including area code
- Your email address
- Your product(s) or service(s)
- The criteria you will use to determine if your trademark is distinctive enough to deserve registration
What To Include In Your International Trademark Application
Like with all applications for U.S. registration, you’ll need to include plenty of information in your international trademark application. This includes information about you, your goods and services, the goods and services you will offer, and your trademark(s).
How To Proceed After You File Your International Trademark Application
Once you file your international trademark application, you need to keep your eyes on the official procedure. Trademark offices generally accept applications only up to three years after the date of first use of a registered trademark. After that, the office will send you a notice of non-filing, usually in the mail.
You need to reply to that notice within 30 days, asking why you haven’t applied for registration. If the office is serious about not accepting your application, they will publish the reason in the official journal. If they decide to ignore your application, they notify you and give you 30 days to appeal the decision to the trademark office in your home country.
The benefits of filing an international trademark application far outweigh the small risks involved, so it is something to consider if you’re thinking of doing so. The only downside is that you need to pay the filing fee in your home country.
In short, filing an international trademark application is like filing a letter, but with more benefits. Start thinking about what you need to file and prepare your application accordingly.