How to communicate objections
All substantive objections to an application must be raised together. For this purpose, the mark as a whole must be considered. Objection must be clear and understandable. Reproducing the words of section is not accepted by courts, unless reasons are also given. The Trade Marks Act, 1999 sets out the absolute and relative grounds for refusal. It is necessary to state the section and subsection of the Act being relied upon to support any objection, and to clearly set out the grounds for objection so that the applicant or his agent know the reason for the objections(s) Online Trademark Registration.
Section 2(1)(zb) of the Act will provide the basis for objection where the trade mark is not graphically represented on the application form or appears to be incapable of functioning as a trade mark at all. In the latter case there are certain to be additional grounds for objection under section 9 and 11 which should set out the reasons why the mark is considered to be incapable of distinguishing the applicant’s goods or services Online Trademark Registration.
Where the objection is under section 9(1)(a) of the Act (only) it is not normally sufficient simply to indicate that the mark is devoid of any distinctive character. The applicant should be given sufficient information so as to allow him to understand the reason for that objection. The explanation may be fairly general, e.g. that Common surnames or 2 letter marks are regarded as inherently devoid of any distinctive character.
In other cases a more specific explanation is required, e.g. that “the mark consists of a 3 dimensional shape of a container which does not appear to be one that the public will take as a mark of origin until they have been educated to do so”. If the objection is under section 9(1)(b) of the Act – that is the mark consists exclusively of a mark or indication which may serve in trade to designate characteristics of the goods or services – the TMR will indicate what (which) characteristic(s) of the goods or services the mark appears to designate, nothing more is required Online Trademark Registration.