It is possible to obtain trademark protection in any country, and the legal protection regime will be the same for resident firms and foreign companies. Registration of designations in Russia takes place by filing a national application through Rospatent or by applying through the Madrid system. Registration procedure will include compulsory examinations which should confirm the uniqueness of the designation in comparison with the already protected objects.
Rules of registration of foreign trademarks
The procedure for securing rights to trademarks in the Russian Federation is regulated by the Civil Code of the Russian Federation. Norms of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation fully correspond to the international agreements and conventions to which Russia is a party. Here are the rules to be observed by a foreign brand that has decided to register its trademarks in Russia:
it is possible to file an application for a designation already protected in other countries, or for a new trademark developed to enter the market of the Russian Federation;
national application is submitted to Rospatent in Russian, while foreign companies can do business in Russia only through local patent attorneys;
a company can file an application under the Madrid system - in this case it is possible to specify several countries where the trademark will be granted legal protection.
Problems may arise if a designation similar to the trademark of a foreign company has already been registered in the territory of the Russian Federation. In this case there will be no sign of distinctiveness, and the identification of identity or similarity with the protected object will result in the rejection of the application. Options for solving this problem are to change the content of the trademark, or to challenge already registered rights.
Even before filing an application, it is advisable to conduct a preliminary information search in the Register of Trademarks of the Russian Federation. A foreign business entity can do this on its own or through patent attorneys. The second option is optimal, as the verification will be as quick and objective as possible.
The following rules should be taken into account when drawing up and submitting an application:
Only legal entities and entrepreneurs can register trademark rights, so the application from citizens will be rejected;
The content of the application includes an application, the designation and its description, a list of product groups according to the International Classification of Goods;
A company must immediately specify what types of products will be covered by the protection of the designation - the classifier of the Nice Classification is used for this purpose.
After filing the application it is no longer possible to make changes to the content of the designation, so the company must immediately provide for all the consequences of upcoming examinations.
How the examination of a foreign trademark is conducted
The application will be subjected to examination in Rospatent. As soon as the documents are received and the information about the application is published in the Bulletin of Rospatent, the company will receive the priority. This gives an advantage during the examinations in case several applications with similar designations are examined simultaneously. The procedure of consideration of the application includes the following stages:
formal examination - Rospatent specialists will check correctness of forms and forms, availability of all necessary documents in the application;
examination of the designation - an information search on the registers will be carried out, the distinctiveness of the trademark will be checked;
to make a positive decision, the experts will check the absence of prohibitions and restrictions on the provision of legal protection (for example, a refusal will be made if the object may mislead consumers about the manufacturer or product properties).
If there are no claims on the part of the experts, a decision on the registration of the foreign trademark will be made. The information about the right holder and the registered designation will be entered in the registry, and the applicant will receive a certificate of protection. The regime of legal protection is set for 10 years, but the company will be able to extend this term an unlimited number of times. To extend it, one needs to submit an application to Rospatent and pay a fee.
Having received a certificate of protection, a foreign company will be able to use any options to protect its trademark on the Russian market - to submit written claims, to go to court or law enforcement agencies. Also exclusive rights to the trademark can be sold or transferred to other persons under contracts.
If you need to register a foreign trademark in Russia, you can use our services. We will help you to prepare all necessary documents for filing an application with the Russian PTO and represent your interests for registration of a trademark. To learn more about registration options, consult our specialists. You can do it by phone, indicated on our site or via the feedback form.
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