What is included in an IPO examination?

Photo of Tomas Orsula

Written by Tomas Orsula

Senior Trademark Attorney

The exact process of evaluating trademark applications, including time frames, differs from country to country. However, in general, the examiner will look into the following:

  • Whether the applicant meets the formal requirements, such as providing correct owner details, fulfilling the condition of having legal representation (if applicable), etc.
  • Whether the mark meets the distinctiveness criterion, i.e., whether it can be distinguished as a clear source of listed goods/services on its own merit.
  • Whether the mark is in similarity conflict with any trademarks previously registered with the given IPO. The similarity of goods/services between the trademarks plays a role in this assessment. Some jurisdictions then go ahead and notify the owners of these similar trademarks, who can then decide whether they want to raise an opposition and challenge the applicant's mark. In the US, the USPTO stops the application on their behalf outright.

If you want to be sure your mark meets both the distinctiveness and similarity criteria, use our free lawyer's check. Our lawyers will evaluate your mark and give you recommendations if they find any issues or discover a dangerously similar competition with an already registered trademark.

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