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Title: Trademark registration in the United Kingdom

How is my trademark registered?

When you register a trademark in the UK the process is completed through the UK Patent Office, giving the registrant far wider protection and making any infringement much easier to deal with.

There are two stages involved in the process C a formal trademark search and the full trademark application. The formal search will investigate further to ascertain if there are any existing identical or similar trademarks registered in the same or similar Class of goods/services or whether there is any reason why the trademark might be unacceptable under the terms of the Trademarks Act 1994 Section 3.

The application stage generally takes around six months to complete. Once a trademark application has been accepted by the Patent Office, it will be advertised in the Trademarks Journal, which is published every Friday on the Patent Office web site. The Journal advertisement will last for a period of three months, which allows any interested parties with justifiable cause to oppose the registration of a trademark. Opposition is the legal procedure, which allows anyone to try and stop the registration of a trademark. They may only do this by filing the appropriate documents with the Patent Office.

The most common reasons for someone wanting to oppose the registration of a trademark are:

They think the trademark is one which is not unique to the applicant and should be free for everyone in that line of trade to use; or

They own a brand name (which does not have to be a registered trademark) which is the same as, or similar to, the applicant's mark.

If the formal search is positive and the formal application receives opposition following the Journal advertisement, we reserve the right to charge additional fees to handle any legal matters arising from the opposition. If no oppositions are received, the trademark will automatically become registered.

Trademark Registration - what is included?

The registration process includes the following:

Trademark search conducted with The Patent Office, which takes approximately 2 to 3 weeks.

Application to register a trademark with the Patent Office in one class. Additional classes are charged at £50.00 plus VAT per class. The application can take approximately 5 months if no objections are raised.

Forwarding of Trademark Certificate upon registration.

10 year registration upon successful application.

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