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Saturday, June 3, 2017

Trademark Amendment Rules 2017

Trademark Amendment Rules 2017 have been notified from March 6, 2017. The positive feature of amendment is that now only few forms are applicable for various proceeding. The dichotomy in practice where ordinary Applicant was supposed to pay for extra character beyond 500 characters as well as association with earlier mark (whereas those entering through Madrid were exempted), is done away with.

The drawback is Govt fee has been increased  up to 125% for various services. But the impact is minimum for natural persons, small entity and start ups where increase in fee is only 12.5% for e-filing and 25% for physical filing.

The provision as to declaration of a mark as well known mark on payment of fee by Registry is somehow controversial provision, as earlier only the Court and IPAB were vested with such powers. Now it needs to be seen what marks are declared as well known by registry. If used carefully, this provision may save substantial costs towards infringement and passing off action, as such declaration would come handy for the holders of well known mark. However, the Trademark Registry is insisting on evidence in support so that a reasoned order could be passed after assessing all the claims and information provided by the claimant.

Besides the above amendments the TM Registry has reduced the examination time to 1-2 months for newly filed applications. Where user is claimed, a duly notarised affidavit in support of the user is to be filed for claiming the user date.


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