Nigeria Trademark Registration for Clients From Around the Globe
Build a powerful brand with the ® symbol and Make it easier to sue those who steal your mark. We offer flat fee Nigeria trademark search, application and registration services to clients from all over.
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A trademark is a company’s persona and identity in the marketplace.
Every aspect of a company’s business or product or service is a mark of its identity, which deserves protection, whether it is registered or not. Do not assume you own the mark until you have successfully registered it. This is so even when the violator is a powerful company or even a Government or its agency.
SplashDict can help you register your trademark - a name, logo, slogan, shape, colour or label with the Commercial Law department, Ministry of Trade and Investment in Nigeria.
You can register your trade mark to protect your brand, for example the name of your product or service. When you register your trade mark, you’ll be able to:
- Take legal action against anyone who uses your brand without your permission, including counterfeiters.
- Put the ® symbol next to your brand - to show that it’s yours and warn others against using it.
- Sell and license your brand.
What is a trademark?
A trademark can be any word, phrase, symbol, design, or a combination of these things that identifies your goods or services. It’s how customers recognize you in the marketplace and distinguish you from your competitors.
You can legally prevent others from using the same or a similar trademark for related goods or services without your permission.
- Identifies the source of your goods or services.
- Provides legal protection for your brand.
- Helps you guard against counterfeiting and fraud.
What will NOT protect your trademark;
- Forming a Company or Partnerships having the name.
- Registering the name as a Business name.
- Buying a Domain Name.
- Poor Man’s Trademark (writing it down and mailing it to yourself to prove that you thought of it first).
- Copyright Registration.
Using the trademark symbol ®
Every time you use your trademark, you can use a symbol with it. The symbol lets consumers and competitors know you’re claiming the trademark as yours. Once you register your trademark with us, use an ® with the trademark.
Who can register a Trademark?
Nigerians, foreigners, companies, partnerships, associations or societies can register a trademark.
In general, any individual, organization, governmental or business entity, including non-profit organizations, using (and in some jurisdictions, proposing to use) a trademark to identify its goods or services is entitled to register a trademark.
What can be registered as a Trademark?
Any device, brand, heading, label, ticket, name, signature, word, letter, colour marks, numeral, or any combination thereof may be registered as a trademark. Three dimensional marks are also eligible for trade mark protection.
- A name like Nike, MTN, 7Up.
- A logo like the Apple logo, the Shell logo.
- A slogan like "Just do it", "E Choke".
What cannot be registered as a Trademark?
Deceptive or scandalous marks or designs or marks that are likely to cause confusion are not eligible for trademark protection. Names of chemical substances and geographical names in their ordinary signification are also ineligible for trademark protection.
- A song, book, film, or other original creative work. Get copyright instead.
- An invention is like a technical process, the machine, manufactured good, or chemical formula. Look into a patent.
What is the Trademark Registration process in Nigeria?
After the application is made, the applicant is provided with an acknowledgment immediately. Once the application is successful, the Trademark Registry will issue an Acceptance Letter. The Acceptance Letter is evidence of acceptance and registration and this is accepted by other organisations who request it to process other registration e.g. NAFDAC.
However, there is a period during which members of the public can object to a registration. This is when the Trademark is published in the Trademark Journal, if a published Trademark is not objected to within the specified time frame, the applicant will be able to apply for a Certificate. The grant of the Certificate is the final stage of the process.
How long on average does Trademark Registration take?
It usually takes between 12–18 months to register a trademark in Nigeria where there are no oppositions. So, you should begin registration immediately. Here is a breakdown of the timeframe;
- Acknowledgment letter: 24 hours from submission
- Acceptance Letter: 4-6 weeks from submission
- Publication in Trademark Journal: 32 weeks from Acceptance Letter stage
- Grant of Certificate: 12 weeks from publication
What information do you need in order to register my Trademark?
After payment is made, you will be redirected to a page where you'll upload a scan of the logo, the name of the brand/trademark you intend to protect, and information about the line of business or type of service provided. We'll use this information to process your request.
What territories can be covered by a trademark in your jurisdiction?
Trademarks registration and protection is territorial; A trade mark registered in Nigeria is limited to Nigeria.
Why Your Trademark Application will be rejected;
The absolute grounds for refusal of Trademark Registration in Nigeria are as follows:
- Where the trade mark is bereft of distinctive character.
- Where a trade mark is contrary to law, or is immoral, deceptive or scandalous.
- Where a trade mark is likely to deceive or cause confusion.
- Where a trade mark contains names of chemical substances, use of the Coat of Arms of Nigeria, the National Flag of Nigeria, use of any emblem or title such as President or Governor without appropriate authorisation.
- Where the trade mark contains words such as “patent”, “Patented”, Registered”, “Registered Design”, or “Copyright”.
- Where the trade mark contains words such as “Red Cross” or “Geneva Cross” and representations of the Geneva and other crosses in red or of the Swiss Federal Cross in white on a red ground or in a silver tone on a red ground or such representations in a similar colour or colours.
The relative grounds for refusal of Trademark Registration in Nigeria are as follows:
- A trade mark application is filed by a person other than the actual owner.
- A trade mark is sought to be registered in bad faith.
- The trade mark sought to be registered was fraudulently obtained.
- The trade mark sought to be registered is identical or confusingly similar to an already registered trade mark.
What happens when a Trademark is granted Registration?
Registration of a trademark takes effect from the date the application for the registration of the trademark was filed.
When a Trademark Registration is granted, a certificate of registration bearing the Registered trademark number is issued. A trademark registration grants the trademark owner rights to institute an action at the Federal High Court for infringement of the trademark, the right to the exclusive use of the registered trademark and right to stop a third party from using a similar or identical trademark in the course of commerce or business.
Registration of a trade mark is effective for an initial term of (seven) 7 years from the date of filing. Thereafter, the trade mark is renewed perpetually every (fourteen) 14 years.
The trademark registration is classified into 45 different classes of goods and services in accordance with the Nice international system of classification. It is important for every applicant to understand the classes the registering trademark belongs to or closely align with.
However, a trademark may be registered in more than one class where the applicant is seeking protection in both classes. And where applicant seeking protection in multiple classes, separate filing fees must be paid for each of the classes. The 45 trademark classes in Nigeria are listed below:
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How Much Does it Cost to Register Your Trademark in Nigeria?
A Nigerian trademark is a device, brand, heading, label, ticket, name, signature, word, letter, numeral, or any combination thereof that is legally registered with the Trademarks, Patents and Designs Registry, Commercial Law Department, Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, as representing a company or product and distinguishing the source of goods from one party or company to those of others in the same line of business.
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