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Last modified: 28 December 2010

Trademarks


Trademarks
What is a trade mark?
What sort of mark can be trade mark protection obtained for?
Are all trade marks registrable?
Who can obtain trade mark protection?
What rights do registered trade marks bring?
How to obtain a registered trade mark in Hungary?
How foreigners can apply for trademark protection?
What are the stages of the trade mark registration procedure?
How much does it cost to obtain a trademark?
How to obtain trademark protection abroad?
What can be done when the registration is infringed?
How long does trade mark protection last?


Trademarks

For application filed after 01/07/97: Law on Trademark Protection No. XI of 1997
For application filed before 01/07/97 Law on Trademark Protection No. IX of 1969

What is a trade mark?

A trade mark is any sign which is capable of being represented graphically and which can in the course of trade, distinguish the goods or services from those of other undertakings. Such signs may include words, including personal names, designs, letters, and the shape of goods and their packaging. It is a basic tool of the economic competition and plays very important role in marketing and advertisement.

What sort of mark can be trade mark protection obtained for?

 Signs which may be granted trademark protection:

  •  words, combination of words, including personal names and slogans,
  •  letters, numerals,
  •  figures, pictures,
  •  two- or three-dimensional forms, including the shape of goods or of their packaging,
  •  colours, combination of colours, light signals, holograms,
  •  sound signals, and
  •  combination of the previous signs.

Are all trade marks registrable?

No. Registration is not allowed for marks excluded from protection by the law (absolute grounds for refusal and/or relative grounds for refusal) e.g.

  • consist exclusively of signs which may in the course of trade, refer to some characteristic, e.g. the kind, quality, quantity or intended purpose of the goods or  services;
  • are customary in the current language or in the practices of trade;
  • consist of a shape which results from the nature of the goods;
  • may deceive consumers as to the nature, quality or other characteristics of the goods or services;
  • are identical with or similar to, a mark already on the register in respect  of the same goods or services, or similar goods or services;
  • are identical with or similar to a mark having a reputation in the country in respect of even dissimilar goods or services;
  • are identical with or similar to a mark which is well-known in the country even if the mark is unregistered.

Who can obtain trade mark protection?

Any natural or legal person.

What rights do registered trade marks bring?

The right to use the trade mark in relation to the goods or services for which it is registered or to let others use the trade mark under terms agreed with the registered owner. Also the right to take legal action against others who might be infringing the registration by using the same or similar trade mark on the same or similar goods or services for which the trade mark is registered.

How to obtain a registered trade mark in Hungary?

By filing

  • a national trade mark application to the Hungarian Intellectual Property Office or
  • an international trade mark application governed by the Madrid Agreement and/or the Madrid Protocol on the International registration of Trade Marks.

How foreigners can apply for trademark protection?

  • Foreign applicants have to authorize representatives residing in the relevant country.
  • Foreign applicants have to be represented by representatives residing in Hungary.
  • Domestic applicants do not have to have representatives, however, you are strongly advised to obtain professional help offered by patent agents.

What are the stages of the trade mark registration procedure?

The following short guide summarizes the registration procedures.

How much does it cost to obtain a trademark?

The following table summarizes the fees should be paid.

How to obtain trademark protection abroad?

By filing

The Hungarian Intellectual Property Office forwards the international as well as the Community trademark applications of the Hungarian applicants.

What can be done when the registration is infringed?

The registered owner of the trade mark has the right to take legal action and claim

  • the declaration by court of the infringement;
  • the cease of the infringement;
  • satisfaction from the infringer e.g. by way of a declaration, made public if necessary;
  • surrender of the enrichment obtained by infringing the registration;
  • communication of data concerning the infringement;
  • seizure of means used for infringment and of infringing products;
  • measures by the customs authorities to prevent free circulation of infringing goods;
  • damages.

How long does trade mark protection last?

For 10 years beginning on the filing date of the application, which may be extended through further periods of 10 years on the registered owner's request.

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