Trademarks are intangible company assets, which help protect patents and design secrets from theft. Therefore, whether it’s protecting a secret formula or the specific design shape of your product, it is a must-have if you really want to remain exclusive. Also, the parastatal that handles trademark in Nigeria is the Trademarks, Patents, and Design Registry. However, your process of trademark registration does not start there. Where does it start? Read on, as we would be discussing the complete process of trademark registration in Nigeria.
What are the processes for trademark registration in Nigeria?
There are basically three steps to take when dealing with trademark registration in Nigeria. It entails that you carry out research, filing, and then publication. More so, each of these steps is crucial to the success of your application, and should not be taken lightly.
The process of trademark search is done to ensure your trademark is not infringing on any existing trademarks in the books. Therefore, your application can only be presented for filing when it isn’t. Trademark search is actually among the criteria for completing your trademark registration in Nigeria, therefore you should take it seriously. Ensure there is no conflict before proceeding to the filing stage.
How to carry out trademark search in Nigeria
You are to carry out the search by going through the Trademark, Patents, and Designs online portal. However, the portal is only accessible to trademark accredited agents or attorneys, therefore you would have to contact one. Also, these agents pay to carry out the search, and for more accuracy, they may also choose to physically search the trademark office to ensure no stones are left unturned.
after conducting the search, and confirming that there is are no existing conflicts, you can then proceed to trademark filing. Filing is actually the first step to applying for the trademark, and if accepted, they would issue you an Acceptance Letter. Also, you can fill the application form online on the Trademarks, Patents, and Design Registry’s website. However, the portal is only accessible to accredited agents who major as trademark lawyers. For convenience, you can easily forward the papers online to the agent, as the process does not include physical materials.
all things being equal, the last step is to publish your trademark application. However, even when you’ve successfully searched and filed your trademark, the registry can reject to register it under certain conditions. These include when they find the trademark immoral, descriptive, or imitate the emblem of a country or international organization. Also, before publication, the patent is thrown out to the public for any parties who may be in opposition to publish it. In the event that an opposition files a claim and you properly defended it, your trademark certificate would be issued to you.
What are the requirements for trademark registration in Nigeria?
You would need to provide the following documents during the filing stage:
- Trademark words and logo if any
- Name of the applicant
- Phone number and email address of the applicant
- Address of the applicant
- Power of Attorney authorizing the agent for foreign applicants
How long does a trademark certificate last?
Currently, the certificate issued by the body in Nigeria lasts about 7 years at first validity. However, subsequent renewals last for 14years. This means that you would have to renew it every 14 years to ensure it stays valid.
Trademark registration in Nigeria is less stressful and time-consuming due to the advancement of technology. Today, every step from start to finish can be done online through any accredited trademark attorney.