What is a Trademark Opposition?
In India, Trademark Opposition comes only after a stage i.e. once the registrar has approved the trademark application on the distinctiveness factor and publishes the trademark in the journal for the public or third-party opposition, if any. There is no restriction for anyone to oppose the application. Anyone can oppose the published trademark within a period of 3 months which can be extended for a month more (3+1); beginning from the day it was first published. If the applied trademark is opposed, then opposition proceeding is started. After which, both the parties involved, in the case, need to come to a conclusion and the decision is taken, after submission of the all the documents, facts and information, which are relevant to the case. The decision whether the mark can be registered or abandoned lies with the trademark authority. Any person who believes that the published trademark can create confusion on the part of public can file for the opposition while the onus of defending the trademark lies in the hands of trademark registrant.
Benefits of filing Trademark Opposition
- Highly effective remedy for trademark owner: – Trademark opposition plays a very important role as it is a chance for the registered trademark owners to stop any other mark that can hinder/ dilute their brand or cause any possible confusion in the market.
- Public Consultation: Since the brand is created through the public popularity and demand, it is very important to consult the public for approval about the registration of the applied trademark.
Documents required to file a Trademark Opposition
- Details of applicant
- Power of Attorney
- Details about the mark opposed
Grounds for Applying for Opposition
- If the applied trademark is identical or similar to an earlier registered trademark
- If the mark is devoid of any distinctive character or is descriptive
- The trademark is likely to deceive the public or cause confusion
- If the mark is contrary to the law or prohibited under Emblem and Names Act
- The mark contain the matters that are likely to hurt religious sentiments or any class of people
- If the mark is customary in the current language or it is established practices of business