A Trademark or trade mark is a distinctive sign or indicator of some kind which is used by Individual , business organization or other legal entity to uniquely identify the source of its products and /or services to consumers , and to distinguish its products or services from those of other entities.

A mark can include a device, Brand, heading, label, ticket name, signature, word, letter, numeral, shape of goods, packaging or combination of colors, or any other combinations,

Kulkarni Associates has a strong trademarks practice helping its national and international clients in registering and enforcing their brands locally and globally.

We have a comprehensive database of trademarks updated on daily basis that enables the trademark team to effectively devise strategies for trademark selection and clearances fast tracking the process of trademark registration and also to provide hands of advice on infringement and passing off matters.

Our Services include:

  1. Trademark Search
  2. Trademark Registration & Opposition
  3. International Trademark Search and Registration
  4. Renewals
  5. Rectification
  6. Prosecution

A Trademark is generally referred to as a “brand” or “logo”.

A trademark can be a word, symbol, logo, brand name, wrapper, packaging labels, tagline or a combination of these and are used by manufacturers or merchants or service providers to identify their own goods and/or services. It is used to distinguish the owners’ goods or services from those of its competitors and is something that will be distinctive of just one trader. Properly used and promoted, a Trademark may become the most valuable asset of a business.
Trademarks should not be confused with trade names. While trade names can also serve as trademarks, registration of a company or business name under the Companies Act does not in itself give protection against others who might commence using identical or similar marks.

Under modern business condition a trademark performs four functions:

  1. It identifies the goods / or services and its origin.
  2. It guarantees its unchanged quality
  3. It advertises the goods/services
  4. It creates an image for the goods/ services.

  1. Prima-facie evidence of ownership of the trademark.
  2. Important asset for your business or company and contributes to the goodwill generated.
  3. Gives you stronger enforceable rights to prevent others from using the trademark in connection with the goods or services for which it is registered.
  4. Trademarks can be sold, licensed or assigned.
  5. Registration usually covers the whole of India.

A logo can be protected both under the Trade Marks Act and Copyrights Act. Trademark Registration enables you to obtain protection for the brand name and also provides certain amount of protection to the manner in which the trademark is represented. However, if you need exclusivity for the representation of your trademark or logo, a copyright registration is strongly recommended. Copyright registration does not however offer any protection for the brand name.

Once the trademark is registered, it is valid for a period of 10 years from the date of application. The registration can then be renewed indefinitely as long as the renewal fees are paid every 10 years.

Yes. A registered mark, or a mark for which an application to register has been filed can be transferred or sold. Written assignments may be recorded in the Indian trademark registry for a fee.

The most common broad categories of trademarks and service marks in India and Overseas are the following --- Product marks; Service marks; Collective marks; and Classification marks. These distinctive marks may contain one or more of the following:

  1. Any distinct word or letter, numeral, graphical figure, certain wording or phrase, sign or signature, slogan or punch line, picture, logo, or any other distinguishing indication, or a unique combination of many of these.
  2. Any two-dimensional or three-dimensional configurations or shapes of the goods or products
  3. Any distinct color or a certain combination of many colors
  4. Any particular sound, smell, or taste.
  5. Again, the trademarks and service marks are also classified based on the goods/products or services of certain industries and economic fields, they are used for. The internationally recognized NICE Classification of goods, products, and services has identified 45 broad classes of trademarks and services marks which are used in the businesses and services of various sectors of economy in the majority of countries worldwide. This globally famous classification used for the purpose of registration of marks is administered and regularly updated by WIPO. India does follow this Nice Classification in connection with registration of marks. Out of these 45 classes, eleven belonging the services delivered in diverse service sectors, while the remaining 34 pertain to good and products produced in various business fields. Again, here it may also be mentioned that any trademark or service mark is registered only under the specified class(es) which correspond(s) to your business.

The symbol® can only be used beside a registered trademark in superscript style as is shown. Using this symbol ® without getting the related trademark registered is illegal. On the other hand, the symbol ™ may be used beside an unregistered trademark mainly to show authority over the trademark before proper registration of the trademark. Hence, the symbol ™ is often used beside an unregistered trademark in superscript style, especially during the time-span lying between the filing of the same and before its registration.

The trademark infringement is an instance of using the registered trademark of another person/entity, or a mark objectionably similar to it, without a legal authorization from the registered owner to do so, mainly for the purpose of commercial/financial benefits. Under any such situation, the true owner of the registered trademark may sue against the person/entity committing trademark infringement, supported by convincing evidences. The usual outcome of any trademark infringement litigation consisted of a prompt injunction on the continuance of infringement activities by the said infringer, and recovery of financial and commercial losses and damages from the infringer.

To avail complete and exclusive authority/monopoly over and certain unique representation of your trademark/logo, you may register the same under the jurisdictional Copyright Act also.