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Benelux trademark protects Belgium, Netherlands and Luxemburg. In order to obtain trademark protection in Benelux you can register your trademark in two ways: First option is that you request registration in the entire European Union with one single application; this can be done via the European Union Trademark which grants trademark protection in the 28 country members of the EU (more info here). Second option is that you register directly your trademark in Benelux. If you want to proceed this way please follow the steps described below.
Step 1 - Trademark Comprehensive Study
Before filing your trademark in Austria it is important that you evaluate possible obstacles that may arise during registration process. Our Trademark Comprehensive Study will not only list similar trademarks (graphic & phonetic) that may conflict with yours, but also give you an Attorney's opinion about registration probabilities and the class(es) that belong your product/services.
Trademark Class Recommendation
Graphic & Phonetic Similarity Trademark Search
Trademark Attorneys Analysis & Advice
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Step 2 - Trademark Registration Request
Your Trademark Application will be filed by specialized attorneys in Austria, who will carry out all needed tasks before the Trademark Office in Austria in order to obtain registration approval. As soon as your trademark is filed we will send you a filing report which will include application number and date, plus a scanned copy of filed trademark application in Austria.
Process Handled by Experienced Trademark Attorneys
Filing Report & Scanned Copy of Application
Online Tracking of the Registration Process
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Step 3 - Trademark Registration Certificate
Once your trademark application is approved, our attorneys will complete all necessary requirements in order to obtain the registration certificate in Austria. After the certificate is issued, it will be forwarded to your address along wit h a registration report specifying registration number, registration date and any special consideration that should be taken into account in Austria.
Process Handled by Experienced Trademark Attorneys
Delivery of the Registration Certificate & Report
Monitor & Reminder of important dates
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 Frequently Asked Questions
Trademark Registration
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Is there a time frame for the trademark registration approval?

The average time frame for the registration approval is 6 months, if no objections or oppositions arise.

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If I register my trademark in Austria, do I have protection in other territories?

No. Protection for the registered mark is limited only in Austria.

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Do I need to sign a Power of Attorney?

Yes, a simple Power of Attorney is required.

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Are there any benefits from using my trademark before filing an application?

Yes. Pre-filing benefits include: 

  • Show the mark’s distinctiveness;
  • Defeat challenges on the grounds of non-distinctiveness.
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Will there be problems if I don’t use my trademark after registration?

Yes. Your mark will be vulnerable to cancellation of registration on the ground of non-use.

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What are the types of trademark that can be registered in Austria?

Any mark that can be represented graphically and can differentiate a product/service from others is acceptable for registration, including:

  • Names
  • Position marks
  • Words
  • Holograms
  • Devices (with 2 dimensions)
  • Sounds
  • Shapes (with 3 dimensions)
  • Colours
  • Slogans
  • Trade dress
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What are the application phases after a trademark has been filed in Austria?

The sequence of trademark application in Austria in as follows: examination, registration, publication. 

  1. Examination – Once the application was submitted to the trademark office, authorities will examine several factors to see if the mark is registrable. To avoid refusals, make sure that your mark is compliant with respect to morality, formalities, classifications, clarity, descriptiveness, etc.
  2. Registration – If the mark passed the examination stage, registration will be granted. Note that at this point, the trademark authorities have not yet checked if there are existing similar registered marks.
  3. Publication – The following details will be made available to the public: mark, name and address of applicant, number and date of application, goods/services, priority claim, representation and representative. Online publication will give a chance to third-parties to appeal and oppose.
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What type of trademark is non-registrable?

The following marks are non-registrable: 

  • Marks that go against moral standards and public policy
  • Words that have a general meaning (generic terms)
  • Marks that consist of flags, symbols or names of regions, nations, states and international organization
  • Marks that lack distinctiveness
  • Marks that serve primarily as surnames
  • Marks that serve primarily as name geographic locations
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Does Austria use the "Nice Classification" system?

No. The Nice Classification system is not effective in Austria.

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Is a European Union Trademark effective in Austria?

Yes. A European Union Trademark registration is effective in Austria.

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Is there any possibility to claim priority in Austria?

Yes. The filing date in your home country can be claimed as the filing date in Austria if: 

  • Your home country is a member of the Paris Convention
  • The filing date in your home country does not exceed 6 months at the time of your application in Austria
  • Your home country is a member of the WTO (World Trade Organization)
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What do I need to do to satisfy the use requirement?

You must use the mark within 5 years from the date the registration was granted. This jurisdiction mandates owners to use the mark for commercial or business purposes and the transactions must occur in Austria.

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Once my trademark has been registered, for how many years will be valid?

A registered trademark in Austria is initially valid for 10 years. The computation will start on the date of registration.

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What will be the renewal date of my trademark?

The first trademark renewal must be made 10 years from the date the registration was granted (at the last day of that month).

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Is it legal to use my trademark even if it is not yet registered?

Yes. Unregistered marks can be used legally for goods or services.

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Does having a registered trademark in Austria give me any right?

It is mandatory to register a mark in order to secure rights; this is the “first to file” rule.

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What is the website of the national trademark office?

The Austrian trademark office is available online at http://www.patentamt.at/

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Is there any need to use my trademark before I apply for registration?

Actual use and intent to use are not required for registration.

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What are the grounds for a Trademark Application to be opposed?

Violation of proprietary rights is a ground for the application to be opposed.

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Who can contest my trademark registration?

Owners of an earlier registered mark can challenge the registration.

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Is it possible to cancel a registration?

Yes. Registration of trademark can be cancelled on the following grounds: 

  • Issues of morality
  • Proprietary rights
  • Use of protected emblems or badges
  • Bad faith
  • Generic or broad meaning
  • Conflict with famous and notorious marks
  • Use of protected armorial bearings or flags
  • Registration under agent’s name
  • Rights under Article 8 of Paris Convention
  • Mark is functional, misleading, descriptive, non-distinctive
  • Use of geographical indication
  • Rights in personal name
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Are there any rights established by having a registered trademark?

Yes. Owners of a registered mark in Austria secure the following rights: 

  • Exclusive rights to use and make profits from the mark
  • Rights to challenge later conflicting applications
  • Rights to appeal for the cancellation of later conflicting registrations
  • Rights to file an infringement case against third parties that use confusingly similar marks
  • Rights to authorize other persons to use the mark
  • Rights to appeal for the confiscation of counterfeit imported goods
  • Rights to receive damages for infringement
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How long is the opposition period?

The opposition period will start on the date the mark was published. For national registration, it will end three months after the mark was published. For international registration, it will end three months after the publication period.

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Is Austria a member of the Madrid System?

Yes. Austria is a member of the Madrid Protocol and Madrid Agreement. 

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Do I need to present periodic statements of use?

No. Periodic statements or other filings that will prove the use of mark are not required.

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When should I renew my trademark?

Trademark renewals must be done every 10 years.

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What will be the renewal date of my trademark?

The first trademark renewal must be made 10 years from the date the registration was granted (at the last day of that month).

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Is there any documentation that should be presented when renewing a trademark?

No documentation is necessary for renewing a trademark.

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If my trademark expires, do I have a grace period?

Yes. A grace period of 6 months after the expiration date is available.

Basic Questions
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What is a trademark?

A trademark identifies products and services in order to distinguish them in the market. The name, the verbal element, is not the only component that distinguishes a trademark; figurative elements such as logos, design, images, colors and sounds also create an identity that can be protected through trademark registration.

 With the registration, the owner (person or company) becomes the owner of the trademark. The registration is given for a particular country/territory, for certain products or services and for a specific term. While the registration is in force, only the owner may use the trademark in the market where the trademark is registered.

 Some symbols to consider:

® Means the trademark is registered.

TM Some countries use this symbol to show that the trademark has been filed at the trademarks office and is still undergoing the registration process.

SM Some countries use this symbol to show that the service mark has been filed at the trademarks office and is still undergoing the registration process.

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What is the difference between a trademark, patent and copyright ?

There are many ways to lay claim to your work. Trademarks, patents, and copyrights offer protection for owners of intellectual property. A trademark helps people find your goods and services. When recognized as a registered mark, it protects your right to exclusively use the image, logo, phrases, or words to distinguish your goods or a service in the market.

patent safeguards ideas and inventions. It gives a creator or inventor exclusive rights that prevent other people from making, using, or profiting in any way from an invention or creative innovation without the consent of the inventor.

You cannot patent an idea because we all have them. You must materialize your concept into a tangible invention, innovative product, device, or process that offers new solutions to a problem to secure a patent.

Copyright protect published, performed, or printed creative works. People who produce artistic or musical work seek to protect their “right” to stop others from “copying” what they do. Copyright protection protects any original creative works of authors including:

  1. a) artwork (2 or 3 dimensional),
  2. b) photographs, graphic drawings, and designs as well as other forms of creativity;
  3. c) songs, music, and sound recordings of all kinds;
  4. d) books, manuscripts, publications, and another written work; and
  5. e) plays, movies, shows, and other performance arts.

 

A trademark, patent, or copyright are all examples of ways you protect your intellectual property. Your right to control and benefit from your efforts are increasingly important in our global economy. Registering a formal claim to your property is a critical step in protecting what you own.

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What is the difference between TM, SM, ® and other symbols?

You recognize a registered trademark by the symbol of a circle-R following the trademark name or graphic image. Various typographic symbols show copyrights and patents. The presence or absence of a symbol does not change the validity of the registration, but a best practice is to use a circle-R or circle-C for copyrights every time you mention your intellectual property in print. These symbols give legal grounds for claiming damages in trademark litigation. The following is a list of some typical marks you can use on a web page, in written content, or even in a marketing letter.

  • TM: The TM sign shows the brand name for an unregistered trademark classified as a product (classes 1 to 34). The owner uses this sign to mark what they believe is their brand mark.
  • SM: The SM sign is identical to the TM sign except it designates a service mark (classes 35 to 45).
  • ®: ®: Use the ® symbol once you register a trademark or service mark. It shows that the country authority has approved the registration.
  • ©: Use the © symbol to mark a copyright. The word copyright is substitute sign for Follow it with the year of the publication and owner's name. Use it whether the work has obtained copyright registration or not.
  • Patent Pending: The phrase Patent Pending shows that you filed a patent application but cannot guarantee the application's approval.
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What are trademark classes?

Trademark Offices around the world use classes to divide commercial products and services into defined categories.  When you apply for your trademark to protect your brand, you must define the class or classes that you believe are best describe your business activity. 

There are 45 classes – 34 for products and 11 for services – which countries from around the world have standardized for international use under the 'Nice International Classification'.

These classes group all known products and services. You can register the same trademark if there are similar classes, for example, you may register the trademark KING for computers in class 23, and you can also register the same trademark in class 24 for cosmetics. 

Trademark protection only extends to commercial use within your specified classes.  It is possible, then for two entities conducting business in different classes to use identical or similar trademarks and for each entity to enjoy full trademark protection in their respective classes. You can choose multiple classes under which to conduct business if you feel the protection must extend beyond only one class.

You can perform a search of your class with the following tool Trademark Class Search

Trademark Search
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Why do I need to perform a trademark search?

Once you have a product or service and think you have a name for it, how do you know you can use it as your own? What happens if you unintentionally use a registered trademark name? 

Too many people use a name without knowing if they have legal coverage, and they put up big marketing campaigns with names that later they find they cannot use. Performing a Comprehensive Search Study before you decide to register your brand mark is a wise decision especially when you consider future risks of litigation. 

It is a good idea to conduct a Study before you start doing business with a trademark.  It may not be in your best interest to use a mark if another company is already actively conducting business in the same class.  That company may be able to object to your use of the trademark and prohibit you from using the mark in a court of law.

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Do I need an Attorney to perform a Trademark Search?

No, you don’t, but if you have little or no experience dealing with trademarks, we suggest you find professional help. Our company offers the service Trademark Comprehensive Study. The Study will give you details about the classes where might want to register your trademark, it will also list identical and similar trademarks, and finally, it will provide you an Attorney's recommendation about registration possibilities and use of your trademark.

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Where can I perform a trademark search?

If you have some knowledge about trademark registration, you can search using any online trademark search tool. If not, we recommend hiring a trademark attorney or trademark service like Nominus.com to handle your trademark registration requirements, especially a trademark search because the entire process is complex and takes time.

Notice that if you do not complete the application process carefully, the registration process could be extended for many months and cost far more than you intended to pay. The trademark search is a critical part of the process.

A broad trademark search is essential in today's marketplace given the increasing number of unregistered and common law marks. Globalization of markets also raises the question of entering international markets and registration of marks in foreign countries to protect your brand and your property rights.

You need to understand that even a completed comprehensive trademark search does not guarantee acceptance and registration of your mark. A Trademark Comprehensive Study includes a more extensive review process and, more significantly, a formal opinion estimating the probability of your application's acceptance.

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