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Trademark Renewal
In Croatia in order to maintain the validity of a trademark registration you must renew it every 10 years. The renewal process is fairly simple, you will need to provide trademark registration details and send us a power of attorney.
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Applications are handled by experienced local Trademark Attorneys to ensure that all legal requirements are met.
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If your trademark application is rejected, our Attorneys will inform you and advise you on the best course of action.
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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 12 months, if no objections or oppositions arise.

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

No. A registered mark in Croatia is protected only in this jurisdiction.

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Do I need to sign a Power of Attorney?

Yes, a Power of Attorney is required.

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Are there any benefits from using the trademark before filing?

Yes. Use of the mark before filing enables the applicant to: 

  • Show the mark’s distinctive qualities;
  • Overcome obstacles on the ground of non-distinctiveness.
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Will there be problems in case I don’t use my trademark after registration?

The consequence of not using your registered mark is the possibility of being attacked by third parties on the ground of non-use and eventually getting your registration cancelled.

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

Applicants are allowed to register any mark or sign that can be interpreted graphically and can differentiate a product/service from its competitors. The sign must also be objective, clear, self-contained, precise, durable and easily-available. 

  • Names
  • Words
  • Touch
  • Taste
  • Devices
  • Colors
  • Shapes (with three dimensions)
  • Sounds
  • Slogans
  • Holograms
  • Trade dress
  • Smell
  • Motion
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What are the phases of application after a trademark has been filed in Croatia?

The sequence of application is as follows: 

  1. Examination – The application will be examined if it is compliant in terms of formality, classification, descriptiveness, distinctiveness, and deceptiveness.
  2. Publication – Information about the application will be made available to the public particularly to parties that are interested to oppose. The following details will be published in print and online: mark, name and address of applicant, application number and date, goods/services, representation of mark and representative on record, and priority claim.
  3. Registration – After the prosecution and once the opposition has been overcome, the trademark authorities will now issue the registration.
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Are there any types of trademark that cannot be registered?

Applicants may not apply for the registration of the following marks: 

  • Marks that contradict public order and standards of moral
  • Marks that contain flags, symbols or names of an international organization, state, region, or nation
  • Words that have a general or broad meaning
  • Marks that lack distinctive qualities
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Does Croatia use the "Nice Classification" system?

Yes. Croatia uses the Nice Classification system. If the mark will be used for several classes of goods or services, one application will suffice.

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Does the European Union Trademark apply for Croatia?

Yes. European Union Trade Mark registration takes effect in Croatia.

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Is there any possibility to claim priority in Croatia?

Yes. The date of filing in your home country can be used as the date of filing in Croatia if: 

  • Your home country is a member of the Paris Convention
  • The date of filing in your home country is within the last 6 months prior to the date of filing in Croatia
  • Your home country is a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO)
  • International registration can be based in this jurisdiction
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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 it was registered and/or from the date it was last used; no more than 5-year gap in between each use. Use must occur in Croatia and the amount of use is determined on a case-to-case basis.

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

A registered mark in this jurisdiction is valid for ten years.

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What will be the renewal date of my trademark?

The first renewal should be done 10 years after the date you filed the application.

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

Yes. Use of an unregistered mark for selling goods or services is legal.

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Does having a registered trademark in Croatia afford me any right?

The “first to file” rule applies in Croatia. It is mandatory to register a trademark in order to secure rights.

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What is the website of the trademark national office?

The website of Croatia’s national trademark office is available at: https://www.dziv.hr/

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

No. Actual use and/or intent to use are not mandatory for registration.

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

Applications to register a mark may be opposed on the grounds of: 

  • Rights to industrial property and registered designs
  • Rights to a personal name and/or personal portrayal
  • Breach of copyright
  • Proprietary rights
  • Rights of a well-known mark
  • Rights to trade names
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Who can oppose my trademark registration?

Owners of an earlier registered mark and licensees can challenge your registration.

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Is it possible to cancel a registration?

Yes. The following are cancellation grounds: 

  • Conflicting registration (proprietary rights)
  • Descriptive mark
  • Functional mark
  • Generic mark
  • Geographical indication is included in the mark
  • Immoral mark or contrary to public policy
  • Non-distinctive mark
  • Misleading/disparaging/deceptive mark
  • Breach of copyright
  • Personal name rights
  • Registered design rights
  • Violation of rights under Article 6bis, Article 6ter, and Article 8 of the Paris Convention
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Are there any rights established by having a registered trademark?

Yes. As owners of a registered mark, you secure the following rights: 

  • Exclusive rights to use and make profits from the mark
  • Rights to challenge conflicting applications filed at a later date
  • Rights to take an action to cancel conflicting registrations filed at a later date
  • Rights to make a legal appeal against third parties for infringing the mark
  • Rights to receive damages from third parties for infringing the mark
  • Rights to make an appeal to customs authorities to confiscate imported fake goods
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How long is the opposition period?

The opposition period lasts for 3 months starting on the date the application was published and ending three months after that date.

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Is Croatia a member of the Madrid System?

Yes. Croatia is a signatory of the Madrid Protocol and the Madrid Agreement.

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Do I need to present periodic statement of use?

Periodic statements of use are not mandatory in this jurisdiction.

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When should I renew my trademark?

Renewals are done every 10 years.

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What will be the renewal date of my trademark?

The first renewal should be done 10 years after the date you filed the application.

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

A power of attorney is necessary for trademark renewals.

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

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

Basic Questions
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What is a trademark?

A trademark identifies a company’s products and services and distinguishes them from those of its competitors in the market. The name (the verbal element) is not the only component of a trademark—figurative elements such as logos, design, images, colors, and sounds also create an identity that can be protected by 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 trademark symbol to show that the trademark has been filed at the trademark office and is still undergoing the registration process.

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

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

You can lay claim to your work in many ways. Trademarks, patents, and copyrights offer protection to intellectual property owners. 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 services from others 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 alone (otherwise we’d all be doing it). You must materialize your concept into a tangible invention, innovative product, device, or process that offers new solutions to an existing problem.

Copyright protects all types of original published, performed, and printed creative works of art, literature, and music. It prevents people from using, reproducing, or distributing copyrighted works without the permission of the artist, author, composer, etc. Types of work covered by copyright protection include:

  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.

 

Trademarks, patents, and copyrights are all examples of ways you can protect your intellectual property. Your rights 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?

The symbol of a circled letter R after a trademark name or graphic image means that the preceding trademark has been registered. Various typographic symbols indicate copyrights and patents. The presence or absence of a symbol does not change the validity of the registration, but the best practice is to use 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 or trademark symbol indicates an unregistered trademark for one of 34 different classes of products. Owners use this symbol to claim the preceding name or logo as the Trademark of their product.
  • SM: The SM or service mark symbol is similar to the TM symbol except it indicates a claim to a mark for a service (one of 11 classes of service) rather than a tangible product.
  • ®: Use the ® symbol once you’ve registered your trademark or service mark. It shows that the country authority has approved the registration.
  • ©: Use the © symbol to indicate copyrighted material. The copyright notice should appear on the material as Copyright © followed by the date the work was created, the copyright owner’s name, a period, and finally “All Rights Reserved.” Like this: Copyright © 2021, John Smith. All Rights Reserved. Use it whether the copyright has been registered 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 best describe your business activity. 

Countries around the world have standardized 45 classes (34 for products and 11 for services) for international use under the Nice International Classification.

These classes group all known products and services. If applicable, you can register the same trademark in more than one class; for example, you may register the trademark KING for computers in class 23 and register the same trademark in class 24 for cosmetics. 

Trademark protection only extends to commercial use within your specified classes.  It is, therefore, possible 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. If you feel that protection should extend to include more than one class, you can choose multiple classes under which to conduct business.

You can search for your trademark class with this Trademark Class Search tool.

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 whether or not they have the legal right to do so. They organize massive marketing campaigns with names they later find they’re not allowed to use. Performing a comprehensive search before deciding which trademark to register is a wise thing to do, especially when you consider future risks of litigation.  

It is a good idea to carry out some research before starting to do 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.  The other company may object to you using the trademark and legally prohibit you from doing so.

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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 seek professional help. Our company offers a Comprehensive Trademark Study service. The Study gives you details of the classes in which you might want to register your trademark; it also lists identical and similar trademarks, and finally, you get 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 know a little about trademark registration, you can search using any online trademark search tool. If not, we recommend that you hire a trademark attorney or trademark service like Nominus.com to handle your trademark registration requirements, especially the trademark search because the process is complex and relatively time consuming.

Please note that if you don’t manage to complete the application process correctly, the registration can drag on for several months and end up costing 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 trademarks. Globalization also raises the question of entering international markets and registering trademarks in foreign countries to protect both your brand and your property rights.

Please note that even a completed comprehensive trademark search does not necessarily guarantee your trademark will be accepted and registered. A  Comprehensive Trademark Study includes an extended review process and, more significantly, a formal evaluation of the likelihood that your application will be successful.

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