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How to register a trademark in Bulgaria?

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How to register a trademark in Bulgaria? Trademark attorney in Bulgaria - Mr. Atanas Kostov.

 

 

 

1) Trademark applicants can be both Bulgarian natural and legal persons and foreign natural and legal persons acting before the Patent Office through a local industrial property representative. Bulgarian law does not necessarily require the applicant to be an industrial or commercial enterprise which produces or markets the goods or provides the services for which it wishes to register the trademark. 

 

In order to obtain the registration of a trademark, it is necessary to file an application with the Patent Office of the Republic of Bulgaria - directly, by mail, by fax or electronically. When the application is filed electronically, the identification of the applicant and the industrial property representative by a unique identifier and an electronic signature within the meaning of the Law on Electronic Documents and Electronic Signatures are not required. In case of filing by fax, the original documents must be received by the Patent Office within one month from the date of the fax. The date of transmission of the fax must be clearly indicated on the original documents sent.

 

 

2.The WIPO requirements for establishing the filing date should be verified. The filing date is the date on which the following documents are received by the Patent Office:

 

 -Application for registration ;

- the name and address of the applicant;

- an image of the mark;

- a list of the goods or services for which registration is sought;

- for collective and certification marks, the rules governing their use.

 

If these requirements are not met, the application is deemed not to have been filed.

 

Where all the requirements are met, the application is entered in the Register of Trade Mark Applications of the Patent Office with an entry number and filing date indicated therein.

 

For each application for which a filing date is established, it is checked that proof of payment of the filing, examination and publication fees is attached. If the document is not attached, the applicant has one month to remedy the deficiency. Up to one month after the expiry of this period, the fees may be paid in duplicate. If the fees are not paid within this period, the application is deemed to be withdrawn.

 

The application must be for a single mark for goods and/or services in one or more classes of the International Classification of Goods and Services. The application must contain:

 

-an application for registration ;

- the identification data of the applicant

- the identification data of the industrial property representative, where authorised, including a power of attorney;

- an address for correspondence, if any;

- a priority claim, where applicable, including a priority document. Where conventional priority is claimed, the trade mark application must indicate the date and number of the first application and the country in which it was filed. In the case of a claim to exhibition priority, the application must indicate the date of the exhibition of the - goods or services and the country in which the exhibition was held;

- an indication of the type of trade mark;

- a representation of the mark where it is composite, figurative or three-dimensional or a spelling of the mark where it is verbal. The image of the mark must be clear and reproducible at a size of 7/7 cm. An image of the mark may also be attached to the application on an electronic medium. Where the mark is three-dimensional, the image must show its three-dimensionality. If a single view does not give an idea of the overall shape, the image may include additional views;

- a description of the mark and/or an indication of its verbal elements and their spelling, in Cyrillic or Latin characters, and/or an indication of the colour(s) where the representation of the mark applied for is in colour;

- the details of the earlier application, in case of a split application;

- a list of goods and/or services and their classes according to the International Classification of Goods and Services;

- a declaration of renunciation of the exclusive right to an element of the mark;

- the number, date and priority of the CTM application or registration for which conversion into a national application is requested;

- an inventory of the documents attached to the application;

- signature ;

- for collective and certification marks, the rules of practice also apply;

- proof of payment of the application, examination and publication fees.

 

The trademark application must be signed by the applicant or his representative in industrial property matters. Where the applicant is a legal person, the application shall be signed by the person legally representing him. Where the applicant is a legal person or an individual entrepreneur, a stamp is also required.

 

A formal examination is carried out within two months of the submission of proof of payment of fees. If deficiencies are found, the applicant is informed and has two months to remedy them. If the applicant does not remedy the deficiencies within this period, the procedure is closed. Where the examination reveals that the application is not for a single mark, the applicant may, within the two-month period referred to above, divide the application, the divided applications retaining the filing date or the priority date of the original application. In the case of a divisional application, an application, examination and publication fee shall be payable and the contents of the divisional application shall not differ from the contents of the original application.

 

Within three months of the completion of the formal examination or the publication of the international registration in the Official Journal of the Patent Office, an examination shall be carried out to determine whether there are absolute grounds for refusal of the registration of the mark. Where there are grounds for refusal in respect of some or all of the goods or services, the applicant will be informed of the grounds for refusal and will have a period of three months to file an opposition. If, within this period, the applicant fails to respond, objects unreasonably or limits the list of goods or services, a decision will be taken to refuse the application in whole or in part. In the event of a partial refusal, the applicant may, within two months of receiving the decision or under the procedure for appealing against refusal decisions, submit a request for a division of the application.

 

Within one month after the conclusion of the examination of the existence of absolute grounds for refusal, any trademark application which meets the requirements of the Law shall be published in the Official Gazette of the Patent Office. International registrations to which the Republic of Bulgaria is a designated party shall be published within one month from the notification of the international registration to the Office. 

 

4. Within three months of the publication of the mark, any person may file an opposition to the registration or to the recognition of the effects of an international registration on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria on the basis of absolute grounds for refusal. The opposition is examined by the Opposition Division, the person filing the opposition not being a party to the application procedure. The opposition is addressed to the applicant or the holder of the international registration, who may issue an opinion on it. 

 

Within three months from the publication of the trademark application, certain persons specified in the Law may file an opposition to the registration of a trademark or to the recognition of the effects of an international registration on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria. Opposition to the recognition of the effects of an international registration must be filed within a period of between six and nine months from the publication of the international registration in the Official Bulletin of the Patent Office:                     

 

- be reasoned ;

- contain the details of the person filing the opposition;

- contain information on the mark which is the subject of the opposition;

- contain the legal basis on which it is based;

- be accompanied by evidence if necessary;

- be accompanied by evidence of the reputation of the trade mark where the opposition is based on a well-known trade mark or a trade mark with a certain reputation;

- be accompanied by proof of payment of the fee.

- is reasoned;

- contain the details of the person who filed the opposition;

- contains information about the trade mark that is the subject of the opposition;

- contains the legal basis on which it is based;

- is accompanied by evidence, if any;

- be accompanied by evidence of the reputation or renown of the mark where the opposition is based on a well-known mark or a mark enjoying a certain renown;

 

- be accompanied by proof of payment of the fee.

 

The admissibility and formal correctness of the opposition are checked.

 

If the opposition to a trade mark is inadmissible, it is decided not to proceed. Where deficiencies in the formalities of the opposition are found, the opponent has two months to remedy them. If the formal defects are not remedied, a decision is taken to close the proceedings. 

 

The opposition is heard by panels of the Opposition Division composed of three experts, one of whom is the chairman of the panel. The parties are informed of the opening of the opposition proceedings and a copy of the opposition, together with the evidence, is sent to the applicant for the mark that is the subject of the opposition. At the same time, the parties have a period of three months to reach an agreement, starting from the date of sending the notification. This period may be extended twice by three months each upon written request signed by the parties. If the parties file an agreement, a decision ending the opposition procedure is issued. If no agreement is reached within the time limit, the applicant has two months to respond to the opposition. If a response is filed, it is forwarded to the opponent for a statement, for which he has one month. Accordingly, in the absence of a response from the applicant, a decision is issued on the basis of the opposition and the evidence attached to it. In the response to the opposition, the applicant has the opportunity to request the defendant to provide evidence of genuine use of the earlier mark during the five-year period preceding the publication of the application, which must be provided within two months. A copy of the proof of genuine use of the earlier mark is sent to the applicant, who has one month to submit his observations. If the opponent does not provide evidence of genuine use of the earlier mark, a decision rejecting the opposition as unfounded is issued. The Opposition Division will issue its decision within six months of the conclusion of the exchange of correspondence between the parties. If the opposition is unfounded, a decision rejecting it is issued. If it is well-founded, a decision is taken to refuse registration of the mark in whole or in part.

 

Within one month of the expiry of the period referred to in Article 38b(2) or (3) CDM, where no opposition has been filed or where the opposition has been rejected in whole or in part as unfounded by a final decision, the applicant shall receive a notice for payment of the registration, publication and certificate fees and shall have one month to pay them. The fees may be paid in duplicate until one month after the expiry of the time limit.

 

 

5. If the fees are paid within the period prescribed by law, the registration of the mark shall be decided. The trademark is entered in the National Register of Trademarks, published in the Official Bulletin of the Patent Office and a certificate of registration is issued to the applicant.

 

 

 

Please ask your question about the registration of your trademark here: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call our English-speaking lawyer Mr. Atanas Kostov here: +359888915215.

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