What is the Canadian Trademark Application Process?
Similar to other countries, the trademark application process in Canada is in various steps. The six steps involved in the application process are briefly explained below:
- Trademark search: This is the first step, and it involves a thorough search by the applicant in order to determine if there are previously registered or filed trademarks in the database of the Canadian trademarks office that would pose serious problems to his/her trademark registration. When an applicant is sure there are no similar trademarks, s/he can then proceed to the next step.
- Filing an application: In this step, the applicant files a trademark application before CIPO (Canadian Intellectual Property Office). In the application, the applicant will outline his/her claim to the trademark rights, define the classes of products or services in which s/he wants to protect the trademark, provide details of prior use and other things.
- Examination of trademark application: After filing a trade application, an internal examiner at the Trademark Office will examine the application. The examiner will also thoroughly search the Trade Office records and journals to determine if the trademark can be registered as regards the general criteria stated in the Canadian Trademarks registration Act and any prior trademark rights in the register for confusion. If the examiner finds out that there are issues with the registerability of the trademark, an objection will be issued to the applicant, and s/he will be given an opportunity to respond to the objection.
- Trademark approval and advertisement: After the examiner has examined the application and satisfied that the mark can be registered regarding the products or services outlined in the trademark application, an approval notice will be issued to the applicant. After issuing an approval notice, some other formalities have to be completed before the application can be published in the Trademarks Journal. The purpose of this publication is to notify the public ofthe new trademark application and that the Trademark Office has determined that the trademark is registrable.
- Public opposition: On publishing the application in the Trademarks Journal, if there are individuals who feel that they have superior or conflicting rights to a confusingly similar mark or that the trademark is non-registrable, they can file an objection to the application via the Trademark Office.
- Allowance: If no objection is filed after two months of publishing the trademark application, CIPO will issue a Notice of Allowance, inviting the applicant to pay the trademark registration fee. After the payment has been made and accepted by the Trademark Office, the trademark application will be registered. After registration, CIPO will issue a Certificate of Registration to the applicant.