Things to know
- A Canadian trademark registration will give you the exclusive right to use your mark in association with your registered products or services across Canada, and the right to exclude others from using confusingly similar marks.
- A registration expires 15 years from the registration date but can be renewed for successive terms for as long as the trademark is in use in Canada.
- When amendments to the Trademarks Act come into force, the duration of a registration will be reduced to 10 years. These amendments will also extend trademarks registrations beyond words, symbols and designs to include additional types of marks, such as scents, tastes and textures.
Things to do
Develop a registration strategy for Canada
- Undertake a review of your trademark portfolio and assess the costs and benefits of applying for Canadian registrations on existing or newly developed marks.
Registering a trademark
- A trademark application may be filed electronically with the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) on its website. The application sets out, among other things, the applicant’s name and address, the trademark, and the goods and services with which the mark will be used in Canada.
- If the applicant does not (yet) have an office or place of business in Canada, a representative for service in Canada must be appointed for the purpose of receiving correspondence from CIPO. Because the application is examined by CIPO in both form and substance, it is advisable to engage a registered Canadian trademark agent to prepare and file the application and assist in the application process. A registered trademark agent may be a law firm, a lawyer, or a non-lawyer professional, and may also act as a representative for service. CIPO maintains a list of registered trademark agents on its website.
- File applications to register your trademarks in Canada before starting to sell products or provide services in Canada (doing so will minimize the possibility that another business, observing your use of the marks elsewhere, will attempt to register the same marks first in Canada and preclude registrations by you).