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Korean Trademark System – Filing to Registration
관리자 
15-12-28 14:57
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This introduces an outline of the Korean legal system for trademark. The outline includes filing and registration of trademark.
 
 
1. In preparation for a trademark filing
 
(A) In case of filing an usual trademark
 
a) First of all, it is important to prepare a distinctive mark because only distinctive mark can be registered in the Trademark Office ("TO").
 
b) Although the mark to file is a distinctive mark, it is necessary to conduct a search to verify if other person's any similar trademark to the mark to file is already registered. It is because any mark cannot be registered if there is other person's registered trademark similar to the mark to file.
 
(B) In case of filing a well-known mark
 
a) Where a well-known mark to file has distinctiveness
 
Although a well-known mark to file has distinctiveness, the applicant need to conduct a search to verify if other person's any similar trademark to the mark to file is already registered. It is because any mark cannot be registered if there is other person's registered trademark similar to the mark to file.
 
b) Where a well-known mark to file does not have distinctiveness
 
Where a well-known mark to file does not have distinctiveness, it is advisable to submit materials for proving the fame of the mark to file to the TO. It is because the examiner in the TO who does not know the fame of the mark applied may reject the trademark application on the grounds of non-distinctiveness. The materials proving the fame includes the records of sales and advertisement of the goods bearing the mark to file.
 
In addition, it is also necessary to conduct a search to verify if other person's any similar trademark to the mark to file is already registered.
 
2. Trademark application and examination thereto
 
(A) Before publishing the trademark application
 
a) The examiner in the TO examines the trademark application, and he makes a decision to publish the trademark application in case he does not find any grounds for rejection of the trademark application.
 
b) However, if the examiner finds any grounds for rejection, he makes a notice of a preliminary rejection to the applicant providing him an opportunity to give an opinion. When the examiner accepts the opinion from the applicant, he makes a decision to publish the trademark application. On the other hand, he does not accept the opinion, he makes a final rejection against the trademark application.
 
(B) After publishing the trademark application
 
a) In case there is no opposition to the publication of a trademark application
 
Where no one makes an opposition to the published trademark application within 2 months from the publication date, the examiner makes a decision to register the trademark application. When the applicant pays a registration fee, the trademark is registered. The registered trademark is effective for 10 years from the registration date.
 
b) In case there is any oppositions to the publication of a trademark application
 
The Board of Examiners (BE) examines the grounds of an opposition, and it rejects the opposition if there is no merit. For the trademark application which overcame the opposition, the examiner makes a decision to register the trademark application. When the applicant pays a registration fee, the trademark is registered. The registered trademark is effective for 10 years from the registration date.
 
However, the BE accept the grounds for opposition, it makes a final rejection against the trademark application.
 
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