Why and how to register a trademark in Dominica

In Dominica, the exclusive rights to a trademark are granted only by registration, as it is a “first-to-file” jurisdiction. However, in exceptional cases, well-known trademark can be protected even if they have not been filed yet.

The trademark applications must be filed with the Company and Intellectual Property Office of the Commonwealth of Dominica (CIPO).

Please note that by default, applications including a logo will be filed without color claim. This allows the trademark holder to use it in any combination of color. Upon request it is possible to claim color as a feature of the trademark. This will restrict its use to the colors claimed in the trademark application. 

If you register a combined trademark (which includes both word elements and figurative elements) in Dominica, the exclusive right to use the trademark is limited to a use of the trademark in the exact configuration or way in which it was filed and registered. If you wish to use the word element of your trademark separately from the logo (or vice versa), it is recommended you register for another trademark including only the word or figurative elements you wish to use and protect separately.

Nevertheless, if a third party eventually intends to register or use a trademark for similar goods or services that includes a primary or distinct part or portion of your trademark, you will have the right to oppose the application based on confusing similarity. Probabilities of success for an opposition will vary in each case depending on the circumstances.

In Dominica, opposition actions may be filed against a trademark application during a period of two (2) months following its publication. 

If you would like for the figurative or design elements of your trademark to be considered when assessing your trademark for registration in Dominica (Trademark Search Report), contact us directly in order to determine if we may be able to offer this in this jurisdiction. In such cases, prices for service and estimated delivery times may vary.

It is not necessary for the trademark to be in use to file an application in Dominica, nor for the application to register. However, a declaration that the applicant has a bona fide intention to use the trademark in that jurisdiction must be made at the moment of filing. 

Once registered, the trademark must be used within the three years following its registration, otherwise it will become vulnerable to cancellation actions based on lack of use. Under certain circumstances, lack of use may be justified.

Registered trademarks have a validity of ten (10) years from the application date and can then be renewed for consecutive ten-year periods. The trademark renewal can be requested within the period of six months preceding its expiration, or during the six months after it, subject to the payment of a late renewal fee.

 

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