How to Trademark a Brand Name in India – Complete Guide

  • Setindiabiz Team
  • June 23, 2023

How to Trademark a Brand Name in India – Complete Guide

How to Trademark a Brand Name in India - Complete Guide
Establishing a distinctive brand name and logo is a fundamental part of defining your business’s identity. The brand name and logo – your company’s business name – are essential trademarks that help your goods and services stand out in a bustling marketplace. If you don’t secure your trademark, you risk someone else registering it. Consequently, most businesses apply for a trademark early on. In this guide, we will walk you through the process of how to trademark a brand name in India.
Contents on This Page
In a world where brands are increasingly vying for customer attention, the uniqueness of a brand and its logo is priceless. It’s your business’s first line of defense against misuse or duplication. Registering your trademark confers numerous advantages, including legal protections and enhanced brand recognition. Setindiabiz offers a free trademark search tool, enabling you to verify trademark availability before you initiate the registration process.

Steps to Trademark a Brand Name in India

Using a trademarked logo and name is the cornerstone of your strategy for outpacing the competition. Experts maintain that consumers are influenced by business brand names and logos, often basing their purchasing decisions on these trademarks. A trademark not only fosters consumer trust in your brand but also serves as a valuable business asset. Here are the seven steps to follow to secure a trademark for your brand name in India:

1. Formulate a Unique Brand Name and Logo

While choosing your brand name and logo, keep in mind that common industry terms or descriptors of quality cannot be trademarked. For instance, a shoe company cannot trademark the term ‘shoe.’ Ensure your chosen brand name is distinctive and unique to your business.

2. Perform an Online Trademark Search

Avoiding trademark infringement is not only prudent but essential as it can have severe legal ramifications. As a part of your due diligence, conducting a thorough online research should be the first step in ascertaining that no one else is using your chosen brand name and logo. There are three primary methods to perform a trademark search:
  • Database Search: The Controller General of Patents, Designs & Trademarks regulates trademark registrations in India. One can access their publicly available database to verify the availability of their chosen mark. This can be done online and involves searching for your desired brand name and logo within the database to ensure no existing or pending applications match your selections.
  • Online Search Tools: Various online platforms provide trademark search tools. For example, Setindiabiz offers a free trademark search tool that is user-friendly and efficient. It provides a quick way to scan through registered and pending trademarks.
  • Hiring a Trademark Attorney or Professional Service: Engaging the services of a trademark attorney or a professional firm such as Setindiabiz’s expert team is often the most thorough and reliable method. These professionals have specialized knowledge and experience in conducting exhaustive trademark searches, covering all possible classes and subclasses of goods and services. They can provide a comprehensive report that outlines potential risks and conflicts, giving you an informed basis for your decision.
While the first two methods can be conducted free of cost, hiring a trademark attorney or professional service comes with a fee. However, the investment is well-justified given the intricate nature of trademark searches and the potential legal implications of overlooking existing trademarks.
Investing in a trademark attorney’s expertise is especially recommended for several reasons. They possess in-depth knowledge of trademark laws and database search techniques, ensuring a thorough search process. Their experience allows them to interpret search results correctly, highlighting potential conflicts that untrained individuals might overlook.
Moreover, they can provide guidance on your application process, offering advice on how best to describe your goods and services, thereby increasing the likelihood of a successful registration. They can also assist you in the event of objections or opposition to your trademark application, making the process smoother and less stressful. By using Setindiabiz’s trademark registration service, you can benefit from expert team’s insights and experience, significantly reducing the chances of facing trademark infringement issues and increasing your chances of successfully registering your brand name and logo.

3. Submit the Trademark Application

After confirming your trademark’s uniqueness, the next step is to file a registration application. You can either manually file your trademark registration application or opt for e-filing. For manual filing, submit your form in-person at any trademark registry office, with acknowledgement received within 15-20 days. E-filing is more convenient, with almost immediate application acknowledgement.

4. Examination of Trademark Application

Once your trademark application is submitted, it enters a phase of rigorous scrutiny by the Registrar. This examination process is essential to maintain the sanctity of the trademark system by ensuring that every new trademark is unique and does not infringe upon existing or pending trademarks. Following are the important points relating to Trademark Examination
  • Uniqueness of Mark: During this examination, the Registrar delves into the specifics of your application, meticulously verifying the distinctiveness of your brand name. The Registrar checks your proposed trademark against a vast database of existing and pending applications. This is a thorough process, considering trademarks across all 45 classes of goods and services.
  • Legal Validity: Apart from the uniqueness of your brand name, the Registrar also verifies the legality of your application. This involves assessing whether your application adheres to the stringent trademark laws of India. This evaluation includes, but is not limited to, checking the correctness of the documentation, ensuring the applicability of your chosen class of goods or services, and evaluating the distinctiveness of the mark in its chosen industry.
  • Examination Report: If, during this examination, the Registrar finds any conflicts or legal non-compliance, they raise objections to your application. These objections are communicated through an Examination Report, which you receive typically within one month from the date of filing the application.
  • Reply to Examination Report: Once the Examination Report is received, you must respond to each of the objections within a 30-day period. This response, also known as a trademark objection reply, is a legal document that argues against the objections raised by the Registrar, presenting evidence and legal precedents to support your claim.
  • Publication or Show Cause Hearing: If the reply is satisfactory and addresses all the objections, the application moves to the next step, which is publication in the Indian Trade Mark Journal. If the Registrar is not satisfied with the response, a hearing may be scheduled where you, or your attorney, can present your case.
  • Setindiabiz Service: Engaging the services of a trademark attorney or professional service for this step can be particularly advantageous. Their expertise can be crucial in drafting a persuasive response to objections, improving the chances of your application moving forward to the publication stage

5. Show Cause Hearing in Trademark Registration

A show cause hearing is typically scheduled if the objections raised by the Registrar during the examination of your trademark application are not satisfactorily addressed in your written response. Here are important points to consider. This hearing is a vital opportunity to present your case, argue against the objections raised, and convince the Registrar of the validity of your trademark application. It is essentially your chance to “show cause” why your proposed trademark should be accepted and registered. Here’s a brief outline of what happens during a show cause hearing:
  • Notification: You will receive a notice from the Registrar’s office detailing the date and time of the hearing. This notice usually arrives a few weeks before the scheduled hearing, giving you ample time to prepare.
  • Preparation: Preparing for a show cause hearing involves gathering all relevant documents, data, and arguments to support your case. An experienced trademark attorney can help organize your case effectively and develop compelling arguments to counter the Registrar’s objections.
  • Presentation: During the hearing, you or your representative will present your case to the Registrar. This presentation can include verbal arguments, showcasing evidence, and citing legal precedents that bolster your case. It is essential to present your arguments concisely, logically, and persuasively.
  • Registrar’s Decision: After hearing your case, the Registrar will make a decision. If the Registrar is convinced by your arguments, they may retract their objections, and your application will proceed to the publication stage. If the objections persist, the Registrar may refuse the application or request further evidence.
  • Possible Outcomes: If the hearing concludes in your favor, your trademark application advances to the next stage, which is the publication in the Indian Trade Mark Journal. If your application is refused, you can appeal the decision.
Show cause hearings can be quite complex and challenging due to their legal nature. Hence, it is strongly recommended to engage a knowledgeable and experienced trademark attorney to represent you during this crucial step. With their expertise and understanding of trademark law, they can improve your chances of successfully navigating the show cause hearing.

6. Publication in the Indian Trade Mark Journal

Once any objections are addressed, your brand name and logo are published in the Indian Trade Mark Journal. Assuming no opposition arises within 90-120 days, official recognition follows. If a third party opposes your application, you must provide a written response with proof of your claim to the mark.

7. Issue of the Trademark Registration Certificate

If no opposition emerges within the stipulated time, your brand name and logo receive official protection, and you obtain the trademark registration certificate bearing the trademark registry seal.
This entire process, from applying to receiving your trademark, typically spans 6-9 months. Your trademark registration for the name and logo remains valid for 10 years, renewable through payment of a renewal fee. For a more streamlined process, consider using Setindiabiz’s trademark registration service. By letting trademark experts handle your application, you can significantly reduce the chances of opposition and alleviate the burden of the process.


Q1: How long does it take to get a trademark registered in India?

The process of trademark registration in India typically takes about 15-18 months, although this can vary based on the complexity of the application, the Registrar’s workload, and whether or not any objections or oppositions are raised during the process.

Q2: What does a trademark protect?

A registered trademark protects a brand’s identity in the market, providing the owner with exclusive rights to use the trademark in relation to the goods or services for which it is registered. It safeguards the brand from misuse or misrepresentation by competitors, allowing legal recourse in case of infringements.

Q3: Can a rejected trademark application be appealed?

Yes, if your trademark application is rejected by the Registrar, you have the right to appeal the decision. This process typically involves presenting additional evidence or arguments supporting your case, and may require legal representation.

Q4: Is it necessary to hire a trademark attorney for trademark registration?

While not mandatory, hiring a trademark attorney is highly recommended. A trademark attorney can guide you through the intricate process of trademark registration, conduct comprehensive searches, help craft persuasive responses to objections, and represent you effectively in show cause hearings or in case of opposition.

Q5: How often should a trademark be renewed?

A trademark registration in India is valid for a period of 10 years from the date of registration. After this period, the trademark should be renewed every 10 years to maintain its validity. If not renewed, the trademark may be removed from the Register of Trademarks, potentially allowing others to register it.

Related Articles:

One thought on “How to Trademark a Brand Name in India – Complete Guide”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Talk To An Expert