Legal Guide

Searching a Trademark: Everything You Need to Know

by Digant Sharma · 3 min read

trademark search

Introduction

A trademark search may be undertaken in the Indian trademark database. This search will reveal any existing trademarks that are similar or identical. It is essential to conduct a trademark search prior to settling on a brand name since it may save you a significant amount of money and time in the long run.

What is a Trademark search?

A trademark search is an important phase in the trademark adoption or registration process. Businesses and individuals may avoid costly legal conflicts and verify that their brand name is unique by doing a search.

A public trademark search is conducted in the Indian Trademark Registry database. The search examines if a proposed trademark can be used in conjunction with certain goods or services. Similar word marks and phonetically similar names in a certain class can be thoroughly explored in trademark search India. Further post registration, Trademark Licensing and Assignment can help you grow your business.

Why is a Trademark Search essential?

When selecting a brand name, it is critical to examine the name’s originality. A distinctive brand name grants you exclusive rights to the name and might help you develop a favorable brand image in the eyes of your clients.

The act of analyzing search results is a key step in the trademark registration process. A trademark search in India will assist you in establishing whether there are any comparable brand names or trademarks already in use. This is significant since it can assist you in avoiding potential infringement concerns down the line.

The Trademark Act of 1999 categorizes trademarks for goods and services. There are a total of 45 separate classes. Checking your class information is an important step in the trademark registration process. Sometimes, Legal Advice becomes essential for a Trademark search.

Trademark search for its Classes

The initial part of the trademark search procedure focuses on identifying the correct class. The Trademark Registry has divided products and services into 45 categories. As a result, the applicant must pick the appropriate class for the product or service under his brand or business.

A product may appear to belong to one or two trademark classes at times. In such cases, the applicant might choose the most acceptable class or even all suitable classes based on the description of the products or services.

Categories of Trademark search

Trademark Search comprises three categories:

  1. Wordmark – For comparable wordmark representation
  2. Vienna Code – For similar aesthetic representation
  3. Phonetic – For phonetically related terms.

Wordmark Search

To run a Wordmark search, pick the “Wordmark” option from the search type and input the keyword(s) of your suggested Trademark in the box matching “Wordmark.”

There are 45 different trademark registration classes. According to the Nice Classification, Classes 1-34 deal with diverse items, while Classes 35-45 deal with services. As a result, you will need to put the class in the box labeled “CLASS.”

Furthermore, the class(es) should be connected to your Trademark’s services or products. You can only search the India trademark database using one class at a time.

Phonetic Search

The phonetic search would be the same as the Wordmark search method described above but without the prefix approach. As a result, you may use the same procedure as described above to do a phonetic search for the Trademark.

Vienna code Search

The Vienna code search is mostly used to locate comparable device marks, and you will need to input the six-digit Vienna code in the box labeled “Vienna code” and choose your application class. Following the search, the result table would display all of the marks that included the device.

What to do after getting the search report?

When you click the report button, a window will appear with every linked Trademark shown in it. If you do a trademark search for a certain name and discover it exists in the trademark registry’s data, you may not file the trademark application.

When identical or similar marks to your brand show in search results, you should do the following procedures to confirm their legitimacy and the presence of any relevant conflicting trademarks:

  • Use the application number of the appropriate Trademark and put it in the E-register to determine the trademark status.
  • Next, look at the ‘Application date’ field. It specifies the date the trademark application was submitted.
  • Finally, look at the information in the ‘used since’ box. It specifies the date on which the Trademark was first used.
  • Next, look at the ‘valid Upto’ field. This simply indicates that the trademark registration will maintain this mark on its records for how long till the renewal.

Other factors to consider are the description and picture of the goods/services.

Why should you perform a trademark search?

  1. A trademark search will give you information and data on any existing trademarks that are similar or identical to yours.
  2. It provides information on current trademarks that are phonetically similar to or similar to your brand name.
  3. A trademark search will help you determine if your company name or brand sounds similar to certain other well-known marks.
  4. It also allows you to see if your company’s name is on the list of restricted marks (marks prohibited from registration by a private individual).
  5. If your brand name includes a logo or device, a trademark search will provide you with information and specifics about a comparable logo or device mark under the Vienna Code Classification (International Classification of Figurative Elements) to your logo or device.
  6. Assume your brand name includes a logo or other visual feature. In that instance, a TM search will reveal information and data about other trademarks and brand names that are similar to yours and come under the same Vienna Code Classification as yours.
  7. If your brand name has gained commercial awareness, it may be able to register it; consequently, completing a trademark search is vital to save time and money.
  8. It also provides you with the opportunity and time to update the mark before the products and services go on sale.
  9. Finally, it helps to avoid spending resources and time on an unrealistic aim.
  10. The research can also help you in defending a trademark effectively, if need arises.

Conclusion

If you intend to establish a business or an entrepreneurial endeavour, you should contact a specialist to ensure that you are taking all essential precautions to safeguard your brand. This comprises a thorough trademark search as well as a clearance search. By taking the time to do things the correct way from the start, you may prevent difficulties and legal issues down the line. Consult a Business Lawyer now.

Trademarks are essential for a business, boost your business growth. To know more, consult a lawyer now.

Digant Sharma

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Digant Sharma

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