Do I need to run my business in the selected country to register a trademark there?

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Written by Tomas Orsula

Senior Trademark Attorney

Typically, it is expected by the intellectual property offices that you are applying for a trademark under the presumption of using it for commerce in the country of registration. The IPO can conduct randomized checks to verify the usage of your trademark in commerce. The non-use of a trademark can also be used as a basis for invalidation by a third party looking to register a similar trademark.

In certain jurisdictions, such as the US, it is required to submit proof of usage with the IPO. In the US specifically, you can either file a trademark application as a commercially active brand or, if you are yet to launch your brand, with an 'intent to use'. When previously used in commerce, you will be asked to submit the proof when registering. When filing with an intent to use, usually 6 months after applying, the USPTO will ask you to submit evidence as well. Also, there is an additional fee when filing with an intent to use.

In both cases (filing as a commercially active brand or not yet), the USPTO will ask for another proof between the 5-6th year after filing.

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