Today Proverb: Success comes before work only in the dictionary.

Search Vcominfotech.com :

Seo Packages Ecommerce Packages

Title:Trademark registration charges may jump 100%

News Paper

MUMBAI: A steep rise in various fees, from filing of trademark applications to its renewal, have been proposed in the draft Trademark Amendment Rules, 2015, issued for public comments by the ministry of commerce and industry (MCI) on Thursday. An extra 10% will be levied against the fees if the trademark application and forms are not submitted in the electronic mode, but are filed physically. However, the number of forms for filing various applications have been simplified and consolidated into fewer forms.

The other notable amendments contained in this draft are the wide discretionary powers given to the Registrar of Trademarks to determine whether or not a trademark is "well-known" and include it in the list maintained at the registrar's office. Currently, no such list is maintained even as recognition and protection is given under the Trademark Act to a "well-known" trademark against infringement or misuse by a competitor.

Applications for sound-marks can now be accompanied by a sound-file in MP3 format. The Yahoo yodel (of Yahoo Inc) was the first sound mark to be registered in India in 2008.

"One of the biggest changes in the draft rules with also the highest impact is the fact that almost all the fees have been increased by 100%. From filing to renewing, the entire trademark registration procedure will cost an applicant twice as much as it does now. There is also a huge backlog in disposing of trademark applications filed under the national application route. The proposed hike in fees will prove to be more cumbersome to business entities, especially startups," says Raja Selvam, managing attorney at Chennai-based law firm Selvam and Selvam. (Refer table showing hike in fees).

The Registrar of Trademarks, according to the proposed rules will maintain a list of well-known trademarks- the application fees for such inclusion is Rs 1 lakh. For determining whether or not a trademark can be registered as well-known, the draft rules provide: "The Registrar may stipulate criteria in this regard and also call for such documents as he thinks fit."

"The proposed amendment gives a considerable amount of discretionary power to the registrar to define the criteria for arriving at such a decision for inclusion in the list. The registrar is also empowered to remove the trademark if it was later found that the same was erroneously included in the list," explains Selvam.

"Protecting a sound or melody as a trademark is challenging; applicants need to prove that their sound is sufficiently distinctive to justify registration and protection under trademark regulations, the facility to attach an MP3 soundtrack will be helpful," says an in-house counsel of a company in the media and entertainment industry.

Trademark experts say the proposed rules are a mixed bag, but stress upon the need to speed up the process at the trademark office. A response to an RTI application filed by Navarre Roy, an attorney attached to Selvam and Selvam, shows that from January 1 to August 31, 2014, 2.06 lakh applications for registration of trademarks were filed in India. For the corresponding period in 2015, the number of such applications was 1.64 lakh. The RTI application received an evasive reply on the number of new hires at the trademark registrar's office to deal with the applications. "The RTI reply merely states that the average is 24 examiners. Even if we are to take only the applications filed during 2014 and 2015, then on an average the examiner at the trademark office should issue 59 examination reports a day (260 working days average) and we can only imagine the quality of the examination reports issued," says Selvam.

Comments

Top