An Application for Multi-country Registration
European Union
European Union
There are 28 Members of the European Union:
Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, Luxemburg, Denmark, Sweden, Spain, Portugal, Finland, Greece, Austria, Holland, Ireland, Cyprus, Czech, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia and UK.
The African Intellectual Property Organization (OAPI) is a consortium for protecting intellectual property, which is composed of former French colonies.
There are 17 members of the OAPI:
Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Comoros, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Gabon, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Chad and Togo.
The African Regional Industrial Property Organization (ARIPO) is a regional organization for protecting industrial property rights of English-speaking countries in Africa. There are currently 19 States which are party to the Lusaka Agreement and therefore members of ARIPO.
There are 19 members of the ARIPO:
Botswana, The Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Rwanda, São Tomé and Príncipe, Somalia, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Belgium, Holland, Luxemburg Economic Union (hereinafter referred to as the Union Economique Benelux), validity of one application for registration can cover the entire three countries.
EU Trademark Application
Features of EU Trademark

1.Low cost. You can use the trademark in the 28 member countries of the European union with one application.

2.The use of a trademark in any EU country is sufficient to counter a revocation application on the basis of an unused trademark.

3.Be Entitled the priority of the Paris convention. The same trademark used for one or more designated goods or services may enjoy priority when applying for Community Trademark 6 months after the application of the member states of the Paris convention.

4.A registered trademark which has been announced in an EU member state, may claim the right of priority when applying for an EU trademark.

Registrable Trademark of the European union

1.Word marks include letters, numbers, or combination of letters, numbers and words.

2.Design marks containing or excluding words.

3.Design marks with colors.

4.Color or combinations of colors.

5.Three-dimensional marks.

6.Sound marks, etc.

Required Information and Time Frame
Materials and Documents Required for the Application

1.The company business license or a copy of the natural person ID card.

2.One copy of the domestic trademark registration certificate / notification of acceptance (don’t have to provide if not registered domestic).

3.Applied goods or services.

4.A clear trademark drawing.

The Process of EU Trademark Registration

1. The applicant submits an official application: submit an application to the European Market Coordination Bureau.

2. The European Union Market Coordination Bureau accepted: provide a written receipt.

3. Formal examination & prohibition examination: Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) conduct formal examination and notify the accepted application to authorities of the member countries and conduct trademark search.

4. The EU official search: Member countries submit the search results to Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) within 3 months, the office will send search results to the applicant for reference.

5. Announcement: after examination, the trademark will enter the 3 month publication period, any third party may files opposition against the published trademark.

6. Approval of registration: if no third party files opposition or opposition failed, the application can be approved for registration, and issued an electronic registration certificate.

Registration Time

1.Time of receipt: 1-2 months.

2.Registration time: 6 months.

3.After the application has been accepted, the Trademark Office shall examine the application in accordance with the relevant provisions and carry out the prior rights search, and send the search report to the applicant, but will not reject it according to the prior application. Publish the trademark n the official gazette after the examination is approved. The publication period is 3 months. If there is no opposition or opposition failed , the trademark shall be registered.

4.The period of the trademark opposition is 3 months.

EU Trademark Search
The Necessity of EU Trademark Retrieval

As the EU trademark registration covers many countries, the potential trademark opponents exist in abundance. Therefore, recommend the applicant carry out trademark search before file the EU trademark application, in order to find out whether exist the trademark which registered by third party identical or similar with trademark to be registered, and avoid unnecessary losses.

European Patent Applications
EU Patent Applications or European Patent Applications

The European Union can only apply for the EU design patent currently, and may apply through the European Patent Office if it is required to apply for other patents.

The European Patent Office currently has 38 member countries, covering the entire EU region and 10 countries other than the European union. Patent applications and patents in Europe can also be extended to Bosnia Herzegovina and Montenegro according to the applicant's request. In March 1, 2015, the patent enforcement agreement signed by the European Patent Office and the Morocco entered into force, extending the geographical scope of European Patent coverage. At present, 41 countries have recognized European patent as national patent.

Materials Needed
1.Information of applicant and inventor.
2.Patent documents (English): specifications, abstracts, claims, etc.
3.Priority documents, search reports or examination reports (if priority is required)
OAPI Trademark Application
About OAPI Trademark Application

Different from other organizations for intellectual property protection, member countries of OAPI abandon the right of independent examination on trademark and they are absolutely restrained by OAPI in the field of trademark. As these countries have no trademark systems, there is no any chance to register trademark in the countries one by one, but only to register through OAPI.

Required Information and Time Frame
Application Criteria

1. The designate language is French.

2. Trademarks which can be applied for registration include goods marks, service marks and collective mark.

3. OAPI adopts the principle of first application.

4. OAPI adopts the international classification of goods and services, and accept multiple-class applications.

5. Multi-class system.

Required Information and Documents for Application

1. Name and address of applicant(s).

2. Trademark image.

3. List of goods/services need to be protected.

4. Submission information, duly signed.

5. Power of attorney, duly signed.

Registration Procedures

1. Examination - Publication - Registration.

2. Receipts: 1-2 months.

3. Whole procedure: 6-12 months.

4. After an application is accepted, it will be proceeded with formal and substantive examinations. If without any reason for rejection, the application will be approved for registration and enter a six-month publication in official gazette.

OAPI Patent Application
Required Information and Documents

1. Information about applicant(s) and inventor(s).

2. Patent documents (need to be translated into French): Specification, Abstract, Claims etc.

ARIPO Trademark Application
Required Information and Documents for Application

1.Name and address of applicant(s)

2.List of goods/services need to be protected.

3.Trademark image.

4.Power of attorney, duly signed.

Registration Procedures

1.File an application for registration to ARIPO.

2.After the application is accepted, registrar will proceed with formal examination on the application according to the related regulations.

3.If the application passes formal examination.

4.ARIPO will give notification to every contracting party.

5.Every contracting party will conduct substantive examination.

6.Within 12 months from the date of issuing the notification, the contracting parties will give notification of passing the substantive examination to ARIPO.

7.When the 12-month period is over, registrar will conduct trade mark registration in those contracting countries which do not issue the notification.

Notice: At Most 9 Countries Can be Designated.
ARIPO Patent Application
About ARIPO Patent Application

According to Harare Protocol, when applying for an invention or a design application, applicant only needs to submit one application and then he/she can designate any member states in which he/she wants the invention or design to be protected. The protocol requires that application has to be submitted to any one of the contracting countries or directly to ARIPO.

Registration Procedures

1. File an application to ARIPO, and ARIPO confirms if the application conforms to the formal requirements and then allocates filling date.

2. Proceed with substantive examination to ensure the invention is of patentability (i.e. the invention is new, creative and can be applied in industry).

3. If the application conforms to the requirements of the substantive examination, its copy will be sent to the designate contracting countries.

4. ARIPO will give notification to every contracting country.

5. The contracting countries can notify ARIPO according to the reasons regulated in the protocol within 6 months that if the patent is granted by ARIPO, the authorization will have no effect in its territory.

6. As for application for design registration, only formal examination will be conducted. If the application conforms to formal requirements, ARIPO will grant registration in the designate country. However, every country retains the right to give notification to ARIPO within six months that the registration in the country does not have effect.

Harare Protocol and Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) Have the Following Effects

1. Every applicant who submits PCT application can designate ARIPO, namely that they can designate all the countries which are member countries of both Harare Protocol and PCT.

2. ARIPO becomes the receiving office for PCT application.

3. Applicant can choose ARIPO for every PCT application.

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Benelux Trademark Application
About Benelux Trademark Application

1.Benelux trademark rights based on the principle of prior application.

2.The Benelux Trademark Office accept applications for trade marks, service marks, Serial marks, associated marks,collective marks and color marks.

3.Benelux trademark registration adopt international classification of goods and services. One trademark application may refer to goods or services of several categories. When the goods or services exceed three categories, additional fees are charged for each additional class.

4.The three countries is bind as a system, the cost is calculated on a national basis at the time of registration.

Documents Required for the Application

1.Trademark and its instruction.


3.The power of attorney signed by the applicant.

4.Inquiry form before application.

5.Payment receipt of trademark applications.

Registration time

1.Official receipt time: 4-6 weeks.

2.Registration time required: 10-12 months.

3.Period of Benelux trademark validity :10 years, calculated from the date of filing.

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