Collaboration between Legal and Marketing Teams: A Winning Formula for Trademark Objections

Trademark Objection: Understanding the Basics, Reasons, and Solutions

Trademarks are essential for businesses as they allow them to distinguish their products and services from others in the market. Trademark registration provides a legal shield that protects the owner’s brand from any unauthorized use. However, registering a trademark is not enough, as there may be instances where the trademark application may face objections from the Registrar of Trademarks. In this article, we will discuss the basics of trademark objection, the reasons for objections, and possible solutions.

What is Trademark Objection?

Trademark objection refers to a situation where the Registrar of Trademarks objects to a trademark application. It means that the trademark applied for registration does not meet the requirements of the Trademark Act, 1999. The Registrar issues a trademark examination report, which identifies the objections to the trademark application. The applicant then has to respond to the objections raised by the Registrar.

Reasons for Trademark Objection

There are several reasons why a trademark application may face objections. Here are some of the common reasons:

Similarity to an existing trademark

If the trademark applied for registration is similar to an already registered or pending trademark, the Registrar may object to the application. The similarity may cause confusion in the minds of the consumers, and therefore, the Registrar may reject the application.

Descriptive or Generic Trademarks

A trademark that describes the product or service, or is generic, may face objections. The Trademark Act prohibits the registration of such trademarks, as they do not distinguish the product or service from others in the market.

Offensive or Scandalous Trademarks

Trademarks that are offensive or scandalous are not registrable under the Trademark Act. The Registrar may object to such trademarks if they are deemed to be against public order or morality.

Lack of Distinctiveness

A trademark should be distinctive to be eligible for registration. A trademark that lacks distinctiveness may face objections from the Registrar.

Solutions for Trademark Objection

If your trademark application has been objected to, you have the option to respond to the objections raised by the Registrar. Here are some of the possible solutions:

Filing a Response to the Examination Report

The first step is to file a response to the examination report issued by the Registrar. The response should address the objections raised and provide evidence and arguments in support of the trademark application. The response should be filed within one month from the date of receipt of the examination report.

Seeking a Hearing

If the response filed is not satisfactory, the applicant may request a hearing with the Registrar. At the hearing, the applicant can present his case and answer any queries raised by the Registrar.

Filing an Appeal

If the Registrar rejects the trademark application after the hearing, the applicant may file an appeal with the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB). The appeal should be filed within three months from the date of the decision of the Registrar.


Trademark objection is a common occurrence in the process of trademark registration. Understanding the reasons for objections and possible solutions can help applicants respond effectively to the objections raised by the Registrar. Responding to the objections in a timely and appropriate manner can ensure that the trademark application is accepted and registered.


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