Trasomark: Everything You Need to Know

Four Tips for Spending Global Trademark Registration Costs Wisely!

As a sensible businessman, you probably know too well about the importance of registering global trademarks. That said, do you have any idea about the global trademark registration cost?

Costs for Global Trademark Services Is Unlikely a Small Sum

In fact, the fee for trademark registration could be substantial. Being an international trademark registration service provider for years, one client has thrown a handsome US$1,000,000.00 for kicking off international trademarking. In order to allow you to have a better grasp of global trademark costs, we have prepared a table of roughly estimated worldwide trademark fees (Worldwide Trademark Fees). For example, the cost to register a trademark in the UK (one class) would be around US$800 to US$1,200, or the EU trademark application fees would be around US$1,600 to US$2,200. The above costs are inclusive of the government fee for global trademark registrations. While the table would be slightly outdated now given the fluctuation of exchange rates coupled with the high-flying inflation rates, that should helpfully facilitate you to reserve a realistic budget for your global trademark registrations.

Meanwhile, the global recession is around the corner, if not in the present continuous tense. Your growing concerns about minimizing global trademark registration costs is all but justified. So is there any magic, Trasomark?

Cost Structure of International Trademarking

Before everything, you have to understand what constitutes the costs for registering a global trademark.

1. Government fee for trademark registration, which is non-negotiable and generally accounts for around 30% of the overall costs. In some jurisdictions such as Saudi Arabia, the official fees are generally much higher and constitute more than 50% of the overall costs.

2. The second part would be the local agent’s service fees, which generally cover 30-40% of the overall costs.

3. The third part would be the Overall Agent’s service fees, which generally cover around 20-30% of the overall costs.

4. Disbursements such as bank charges and courier fees, which would be a few percentages of the overall costs. VAT will also be charged in many jurisdictions.

Conducting Pre-Application Cursory Searches

Our very first tip – It is a litmus paper to conduct pre-application cursory searches, which is becoming even more important when come to global trademark registrations, and the global trademark search fees should not be considered optional or wasted. Let’s consider the below hypothetical scenario.

John works for an English learning centre in Singapore called “Singlish”.  One day, John is asked by his boss to file the “Singlish” trademark in class 41 (education) in Singapore. Without carrying out any trademark search, he files the DIY trademark application. As you will probably know, Singlish is widely understood as “Singaporean English”, and not surprisingly, the DIY “Singlish” application mark subsequently encounters official objection on absolute grounds (Refusal on Absolute Grounds). Luckily John was later advised by Jenny (a trademark lawyer) that it is possible to overcome official objections if the English Centre produces evidence of use for a couple of years in Singapore to establish acquired distinctiveness, of course at additional costs. Here, no matter if John adopted Jenny’s advice, the sunk costs would only be the DIY Singaporean trademark application.

What if John were asked to register a global trademark of “Singlish” trademark class 41 in the United States, Canada, Europe, the United Kingdom, China, Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Korea and Singapore? The same indistinctive issue will likely re-appear in English-speaking countries. Worse still, it is not uncommon that there is a confusingly similar earlier mark, say “Singish”, which robbed you of the chance to secure trademark registration successfully (Refusal on Relative Grounds). It would have been a total nightmare if all (or most of) the global trademark registration costs were wasted. Imagine that the English Centre is only able to secure the “Singlish” trademark registration in Singapore and Saudi Arabia at the end. It will be a tough call whether to continue the use of the “Singlish” trademark in a global context. This example explains why you should not have the slightest intention to skip the global trademark search fee, as the global trademark cost and the management time at stake is just too high.

Prioritize Your Trademark Applications

Simply put, your global trademark costs = number of jurisdictions x number of trademarks x number of classes. Reducing the number of any above multipliers could significantly reduce global trademark registration costs. It is however easier said than done and you need international trademark registration services for professional advice. You may consider spending more resources (first) on:-

1.  those jurisdictions with larger markets;

2. those jurisdictions adopting the “first-to-file” system (Common Law System is Better than Civil Law System?);

3. where you manufacture (Big News!)

4. secure more trademarks covering more classes with larger markets;

5. secure more trademarks covering more classes with those jurisdictions adopting “mechanical examination” (Refusal on Relative Grounds); and

6. utilize the priority system to defer your trademark filing campaign for up to six months pending the progress of market development (Convention Priority System).

The above list is obviously not exhaustive. Global trademark service is indeed the art of optimizing your financial resources to achieve the widest trademark protection, taking into account your updated business development.

International Registration System

If your trademark applications cover many countries, you may consider the international registration system (or WIPO Madrid System), which will drastically lower the global trademark cost. Filing a single application and paying one set of fees can lead to protection in up to 100 odd countries. Better still, you may modify, renew or expand your global trademark through a centralized system.

However, there are also limitations to the international registration system. Applying one set of universal specifications will unlikely serve your best interests in international trademarking, which practice differs from one jurisdiction to another. You must also reside in one of the member states before being able to enjoy the International Registration System. International Trademark System is a huge topic that deserves a separate full article for further discussion.

Engaging Trasomark

Last but not least, engage Trasomark’s pioneering international trademark registration service (consultancy).

A wise investor would not look for the maximized retained earnings and zero liabilities in a balance sheet as borrowings, if well utilized, offer additional resources for growth. Contrastingly, minimized liabilities may indicate a lack of vision catering to future development.

Likewise, spending costs for a global trademark are also crucial to business development.  Defensively, you need international trademarking to legitimate your commercial activities across different jurisdictions. On the positive side, registering a global trademark can facilitate your IP commercialization leading to an even bigger success for your business.

The key, therefore, is to engage excellent global trademark services to make sure that the spent costs create a more significant commercial value. Paying an extra but limited fee for Trasomark certainly helps. Our colleagues have been providing international trademark registration services for years. Unlike agents, being your consultant and charging a fixed annual fee, it is a mutually aligned interest to reduce your unnecessary global trademark costs and enhance the quality of your trademark portfolio.

Key Takeaways

1. Fee for trademark registration generally includes government fees for trademark registration, local agents’ fees and Overall Agent fees.

2. You will have a better idea of, for example, the cost to register a trademark in the UK or EU trademark application fees.

3. You should also spend costs on global trademark search fees before embarking on international trademarking.

4. Explore the international trademark system to see if it matches your commercial objectives.

5. Discuss with Trasomark so that we can prioritize your global trademark registrations.

We serve as a work spot, in which useful knowledge and invaluable experiences are shared with you. You will always find something useful here during your trademark journey.

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