When you want to start and do it with a new idea or a new service to offer, the first thing that is recommended is to register it, especially so that no one can steal it from you. But, How to register a trademark? Can it always be done? What steps do you have to follow?
Whether you are going to open an eCommerce, manage a service, create a commercial name, a brand, a product, this information that we tell you is very important to you. Go for it!
Table of Contents
What is a brand?
A brand, also known as a trade name, is the title by which you are going to be known and with which you can have the right of use and differentiation relative to your competitors. In other words, it is a name that allows you to identify yourself and that is yours so that everyone knows you and so that you can market products and / or services.
Trademarks are titles granted by the State and allow the holders, who must be individuals or companies, to differentiate themselves from their competition.
All brands They must be registered with the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office, better known as OEPM. This is a public body in which they are not only in charge of the registration, but also of checking that no two brands are the same.
Types of marks
When you are going to register a trademark, you should know that there are different types. For instance:
- Word marks. They are those that are characterized by a name or a denomination.
- Mixed brands. Those that not only have the name or denomination, but also a logo.
- Graphic marks. The ones that only have a logo or graphic.
What constitutes a brand?
Another aspect that you have to take into account is that, for something to be considered a brand, it must meet some requirements. One of them is the one can be a person's name, drawing, letter, colors, figure, product shape, sounds, packaging that:
- Distinguish the product and / or service from the competition.
- It is represented in the Trademark Registry.
The step prior to registering a trademark
Before explaining what are the steps you must take to register a trademark, it is necessary that you check if the name you have thought is available. That is, there is no other company or entrepreneur that has registered with the same name. If so, you will not be able to register it yourself.
To do this, you have to go to the website of the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office and check trademarks and trade names in databases. In that section, you must go to the «brand locator», and, in the search engine that comes out, you must put «Denomination: Contains», «Modality: All». There is a souvenir next to it, that's where you should put your brand name.
If there is no record, the message will appear:
"No results found for the specified search criteria."
What does that mean? Well, the trademark you want to register is free and then you don't have to worry about starting the procedures because there will be no problem (unless two people register the same thing at the same time).
This is very important because if you start the process with the name of a trademark that is already registered, they will deny it, but you will also lose the money from the process, since you do not get it back. You would have to start the process again to be able to start over and pay again.
How to register a mark step by step
Next we are going to explain step by step what you have to do to register a trademark. Actually, there are two ways to do it: in a presence, and online. We recommend the second option because, in addition to being faster and can be done at any time of the day or night, it is also cheaper because they offer a discount for paying online.
Register a trademark in person
When registering a trademark in person, the first thing you should do is go to the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office. You have to fill in the trademark registration application form, which must include all the information they ask for (personal details, trademark name, type ...).
In addition, you must carry the proof of payment of the application fee Since, if you do not have it, they will not accept it and you will have to go to pay it before registering the documents.
Once you deliver them, they will check that everything is correct and, if they see any failure, they will ask you to modify the claim at a certain time to be able to continue its course (otherwise it will be ruled against and filed, having to start over) .
As we told you before, the registration of a trademark is much faster, easier and cheaper, which is a relief for many.
To do this you have to go to the website of the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office (OEPM) and access the Electronic Office. There you can register everything you want, from brands to inventions, industrial designs, etc.
As the case at hand is that of a trademark, you have to click on "Procedures for distinctive signs", which is what is understood as a trademark.
Next, you have to go to "Application for trademarks, trade names and international brands". Fill in all the information they ask for. It is important that you choose the type of brand (as we have mentioned before). Keep in mind that they will charge you the same if you only register a name or denomination than a name or denomination and a logo, so it is more worth doing it for both things if you already have thought about the logo that you are going to wear.
Next you will have to indicate what products and services are the ones you are requesting for the brand, that is, what you are going to do with the brand. For example, imagine that you are going to create the brand "Real" and with it you want to market beer. Well, you have to indicate that what you are going to do is make beers. What is for more drinks? Well, you have to specify it. This is governed by the "Nice classification", established as its name indicates in Nice in 1957, and which establishes a system of classification of goods and services in order to be able to register them as a trademark.
In general, it occupies 45 classes in which, from 1 to 34, it is for products; and from 35 to 45 for services.
The following is an intermediate step. And here you will be able to save the application and review it, or go ahead with it.
Of course, you will also have to pay here, which will be 125,36 euros. Now, it is that price if, in the Nice classification, you have only awarded one class. If you have put several, for every second and successive they will charge you 81,21 euros more.
Once you make the payment, you have to download the receipt and wait to hear from the brand.
How long does it take to register a trademark?
Well, we are sorry to tell you that the time to resolve the application for the national trademark is 12 months, as long as there is no opposition or that there are missing documents or errors. If that happens, the process can be extended up to 20 months.
Also, it is not a perpetual process. At 10 years it will expire and only then can you renew it for 10 more years or indefinitely, but paying the renewal fee.
Is it clearer now how to register a trademark?