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Article · 07.06.2021

Trademarks – Q&A

We have compiled some of the most frequently asked questions about trademarks. Feel free to reach out to us for advice and guidance if you do not find the answer to a specific question you may have. We are always happy to help.

What is a trademark?

Company names, logos, slogans, brands, sounds, colours – trademarks can be many things. A common trait is that they are a singular characteristic of the particular business. As they distinguish your company from the competition, it is worth your while to protect them so they cannot be copied or infringed in other ways.

We often see cases where fraudsters try to freeload on the good name and reputation that others have spent years to build. If they succeed, it may have severe consequences for the targeted company. Registration entitles you to apply the ® symbol to your trademark. This is a small, yet valuable symbol that is recognised internationally. It shows the world that your company has exclusive rights to the trademark. Obviously, this exclusive right applies only to the extent that you have protected the mark, so it is crucial to think ahead in terms of how you intend to use the trademark.

A carefully planned trademark registration is an asset offering critical value in terms of retaining competitive strength and winning market share.

How do you obtain trademark registration?

In order to register a trademark, you need to file an application that defines the products or services your mark is to be registered for. In order to be fully protected, you therefore need to consider and plan whether you might want to use the mark for certain products or services sometime in the future.

This also applies to your selection of countries. Trademarks are only protected in countries where they are registered, so we recommend that you consider early in the process the markets in which it may be relevant to launch your products. If your company operates strictly in Denmark (or another specific country), a national registration may suffice.

It is also possible to register a trademark in several countries through a single application, for example by way of an EU registration which, as the name implies, applies in all EU member states. You can register various types of trademarks with the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), ranging from word marks and figurative marks to sound marks and hologram marks.

If you have an international registration, you can choose in which countries around the world you wish to seek protection. This is often the least expensive solution if you wish to register in two or more countries (other than Denmark).

In fact, if it makes sense in your particular case, you can apply for protection in as many as 124 countries by filing a single application through the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) under the so-called Madrid System. You can read more about prices in the following section.

In order to maintain registration for the longer term, you will also need trademarks for all registered products and services in your selected countries. It is therefore essential that you actually intend to use your trademarks for registration to make sense.

How much does it cost to register a trademark?

The cost of registering a trademark depends on the type of trademark in question and on how many classes of goods and/or services as well as the countries in which you wish to apply for protection.

If you apply directly with the Danish patent authorities, i.e. the Danish Patent and Trademark Office (DKPTO), the base fee to apply for an individual trademark is 2,000 Danish kroner for one class. Applying for a second class costs 200 kroner and the fee for each additional class is 600 kroner. You can find more information on the DKPTO website.

The basic fee for an individual EU trademark ranges from 850 to 1,000 euro. The fee for a second or more classes is between 50 and 150 euro. You can see the current fees on the EUIPO website.

The basic fee when applying for an international trademark under the Madrid System starts at 653 Swiss francs, and will depend on what you are applying for specifically. You can see the current fees on the WIPO website.

We can assist you during the entire application process, from determining your strategy to filing your application.

For how long is a trademark registration valid?

Once registered, a trademark applies indefinitely provided a mandatory renewal fee is paid every ten years. Some countries also require documentation at regular intervals (which vary from country to country) that a trademark is used for the registered products and/or services.

It is important to note that even in countries where documenting usage is not mandatory, the trademark authorities may – in case of a dispute – ask for documentation that your trademark is being used. If you fail to provide such documentation, you may lose your right to the trademark.

We can help you manage and renew your trademarks as required.

How do you register a trademark?

At Patrade, our service to you is first and foremost to assist in assessing your trademark. Can it be registered? Does it resemble an already existing mark too closely? Due to the countless number of registered trademarks, we recommend preliminary searches in various databases in order to eliminate the risk of infringing an existing mark whether in wording or design.

How do you make a trademark strategy?

We can also advise you on which products and services are critical for your company’s business area and on which countries to apply in to achieve the best and most comprehensive protection of a trademark.

We handle everything from filing the application, corresponding with the authorities and supervising the process all the way to registration.

We also offer a software solution that makes it easy for you to monitor when your trademark needs to be renewed, the countries where your trademark is protected and much more.

How do you monitor trademarks?

We recommend that you monitor your trademark, so you can stay informed if other parties apply to register or use a mark that may resemble yours too closely. We review the monitoring reports before we send them to you, so you only need to consider actual threats to your trademark.

How is a trademark registration enforced?

When your trademark has been registered, we will help you enforce it so others do not infringe it. Unfortunately, we see a lot of infringements on online platforms and to address this issue, we have several online brand protection specialists on our team. They identify and eliminate online infringements quickly and effectively, and in many cases you don’t need to do anything.

We have attorneys-at-law who will assess each case of infringement based on their knowledge of your business and the relevant legislation and tell you how to tackle the matter.

Most infringements can be resolved out of court, but if a dispute ends in court, you can safely leave it in the hands of our legal experts. They specialise in intellectual property law and they are used to conduct such cases.

Where do you begin if you want to register a trademark?

It may all sound very complicated and a lot of hassle, but fortunately, advising on these matters has been at the core of our business for many, many years, so you can rest assured that we will guide you safely through the process.

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