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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 belows.
Step 1 - Trademark Comprehensive Study
Before filing your trademark in the Vietnam, you must evaluate any issues that may arise during the registration process. Our Comprehensive Study not only lists similar trademarks (graphic and phonetic) that may conflict with yours but also provides you with an Attorney's opinion on the trademark registration possibilities and the class(es) that your goods/services belong to.
Trademark Class Recommendation
Graphic & Phonetic Similarity Trademark Search
Trademark Attorney's Analysis & Advice
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Step 2 - Trademark Registration Request
Specialized attorneys file your Trademark Application in the Vietnam and carry out all the necessary formalities to bring your application before the Vietnam Trademark Office for approval and registration. As soon as your trademark is filed, we send you a filing report that includes an application number and date, plus a scanned copy of the filed trademark application.
Process Handled by Experienced Trademark Attorneys
Filing the Report & a Scanned Copy of the application
Tracking the Registration Process Online
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Step 3 - Trademark Registration Certificate
Once your trademark application is approved, our attorneys complete all the formalities necessary to obtain the registration certificate in the Vietnam. After the certificate is issued, it is forwarded to your address along with a registration report specifying the registration number, registration date, and any special consideration that should be taken into account in the Vietnam.
Process Handled by Experienced Trademark Attorneys
Delivery of Registration Certificate & Report
Monitoring & Notification of Important Dates
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 Frequently Asked Questions
Trademark Registration
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Is there a time frame for filing for a trademark registration?

It takes an average of 18 to 24 months to complete the trademark registration process. This time frame is applicable only to applications without opposition.

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

The territorial limit of registration is Vietnam.

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Do I need to sign a Power of Attorney?

A power of attorney must be submitted to complete the registration process.

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Are there any benefits from a pre-filing use of the trademark?
  • pre-filing use may demonstrate the acquired distinctiveness of the mark
  • pre-filing use may help overcome an opposition on the grounds of non-distinctiveness
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Will there be problems in case I don’t use my trademark after registration?

Attack on the ground of non-use is available.

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What are the types of trademark that can be registered in Vietnam?
  • names
  • words
  • devices
  • slogans
  • certain three-dimensional shapes
  • certification marks
  • collective marks
  • service marks
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What are the phases of application after a trademark has been filed in Vietnam?
  1. First, the application will be examined in respect of formality.
  2. Second, the application will be published in the IP Gazette. 
  3. Third, the mark will be passed on to substantive examination.
  4. Fourth, the mark will be registered once the criteria for protection are met.
  5. Fifth, the trademark will be published again in the IP Gazette.
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What type of trademark is not registrable?
  1. marks that contradict moral standards or public order
  2. generic terms
  3. flags, names, or symbols of nations, states, regions, or of international organizations
  4. non-distinctive marks
  5. signs similar to national flags or emblems
  6. signs that are confusingly similar to those signs owned by prominent socio and political organizations in Vietnam including:
    • flags
    • emblems
    • armorial bearings abbreviations
    • full names of State agencies
  7. signs that are confusingly similar to those signs owned by prominent personalities in Vietnam and other countries including:
    • real names
    • aliases
    • pen names
    • images of leaders
    • national heroes
    • famous persons
  8. signs that are confusingly similar to those signs owned by international organizations including:
    • certification seals
    • control seals
    • warranty seals
    • certification marks
  9. signs that indicate the goods’:
    • origin
    • functional parameters
    • intended purposes
    • quality
    • value
    • other characteristics
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Does Vietnam use the "Nice Classification" system?

Vietnam uses the Nice Classification System.

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Does the Community Trademark apply for Vietnam?

Vietnam does not follow the European Union Trade Mark registration.

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Is there any possibility to claim priority in Vietnam?

In order to claim priority application, the following conditions are required:

 

  • the applicant's home country is a member of the Paris Convention
  • the home application was filed six months earlier than filing date of application in Vietnam
  • an international registration can be designated in Vietnam
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What do I need to do to satisfy the use requirement?

A trademark must be used in commerce at any time within five years.

The amount of use can be minimal and must satisfy the following conditions:

 

  • the mark must be affixed to goods, packages of goods, means of business or supplying services and communicating papers in business activities
  • the mark must be used in circulating, or offering, advertising, storing for sale of, goods
  • the mark must be used in importation of goods

 

Use of the trademark must occur in Vietnam.

 

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

The initial term of a registration is 10 years which is calculated from the registration date.

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What will be the renewal date of my trademark?

The first renewal date of a registration is 10 years from the application filing date.

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

It is legally allowed to use an unregistered mark for any goods or services. However, use of such a mark must not infringe on others' rights.

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

Registration is required in establishing rights to a trademark. The 'first to file' principle is effective in Vietnam.

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What is the web address of the trademark national office?
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Is there any need to use my trademark before I apply for registration?

Neither actual use nor intent to use is required for application.

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Can a Trademark Application be opposed?

The following can be grounds for opposition:

  • proprietary rights
  • breach of copyright
  • the mark is descriptive
  • the mark is generic
  • the mark is not distinctive
  • the mark is misleading, deceptive or disparaging
  • the mark is functional
  • notorious or well-known mark
  • protection of armorial bearings, flags and other State emblems
  • trade names
  • representation of the proprietor of the mark
  • geographical indication
  • registered design rights
  • the mark is against public policy or principles of morality
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Who can contest my trademark application?

Anyone may oppose an application.

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Is it possible to cancel a registration?

The following can be grounds for cancellation:

  • proprietary rights
  • breach of copyright
  • the mark is generic
  • the mark is descriptive
  • the mark is functional
  • the mark is not distinctive
  • the mark is misleading, deceptive or disparaging
  • notorious or well-known mark
  • protection of flags, armorial bearings, and other State emblems
  • representation of the proprietor of the mark
  • the mark consists of a geographical indication
  • trade names
  • registered design rights
  • the mark is against public policy or principles of morality
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Are there any rights established by having a registered trademark?

The following rights are established by registration:

  • the exclusive right to use the registered trademark
  • the right to file an opposition action against a later conflicting application
  • the right to file a cancellation action against a later conflicting registration
  • the right to sue third parties for infringement or for using a confusingly similar mark
  • the right to license interested parties to use the trademark
  • the right to apply for counterfeit goods to be seized by customs authorities
  • the right to receive compensation for infringement
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How long is the opposition period?

The opposition period begins on the date of publication in the IP Gazette.

 

The opposition period ends on the date on which the certificate of registration is issued.

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Is Vietnam a member of the Madrid System?

Vietnam is a signatory of both 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 required.

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When should I renew my trademark?

Subsequent renewals last for a period of 10 years from the expiry date of the last period.

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What will be the renewal date of my trademark?

The first renewal date of a registration is 10 years from the application filing date.

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

The following documentation is required for renewal:

  • power of attorney
  • original certificate of registration
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If my trademark expires, do I have a grace period?

The grace period is 6 months.

Basic Concepts
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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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