In this article we summarize the procedure for obtaining the registration of a trademark in Kenya.
In this post we talk about:
Which kind of trademarks can be registered in Kenya
The following may be registered as trademarks: words, letters, numbers, drawings or pictures, monograms, signatures, colors or combination of colors. The sign may consist also of combinations of any of the said elements.
Kenya uses Nice Classification for choosing the classes in which the mark has to be registered. It is possible to claim protection for more classes with a single trademark application.
Trademark filing and registration of a trademark in Kenya
After the trademark filing, the competent Authority makes a formal and substantial exam of the application. More specifically, this check verifies whether the rights document have been filed and the required fees have been paid. The check also involves the existence of identical or similar trademarks and the mark is examined also to its distinctiveness.
If the Examiner finds no grounds to refuse the mark, it is advertised in the Kenyan Gazette and any interested party may oppose the registration within 60 days from the date of the publication, by filing a statement of opposition.
The process of opposition may be rather complex; at the end of the process the Examiner issues a ruling that is binding and may be appealed through the High Court.
In case no opposition is filed or if the opposition has been decided in the applicant’s favour, the application will be registered by the Trademark Office of Kenya and a certificate of registration will be issued.
Validity and duration of a trademark in Kenya
The term of duration of the registered mark shall be ten years from the registration date and can be renewed indefinitely, each time for ten years.
A registered trademark is assignable and transmissible either in connection with the goodwill of a business or not. It is assignable in respect of either all the goods or all the services in respect of which it is registered or of some only of those goods or services.
A proprietor of an earlier trademark or any other earlier right, who has acquiesced for a continuous period of five years in the use of a registered trademark in Kenya, being aware of that use, shall cease to be entitled, on the basis of that earlier trademark or earlier rights, to apply for a declaration that the registration of the latter trademark is invalid or to oppose the use of the latter trademark in relation to the goods or services in relation to which it has been so used, unless the registration of the latter trademark was applied for in bad faith.
Eva Troiani law firm is at your disposal for further information on how to register your trademark in Kenya.