In Moldova, trademark registration is mandatory to be granted rights over a trademark, as it is a "first to file" jurisdiction. Only in some exceptional cases can an unregistered trademark be protected. The trademark applications must be filed with the State Agency on Intellectual Property (AGEPI).
Moldova is a member state to the Madrid Protocol. Thus, the extension of an international registration of a trademark via the Madrid System is possible for this country. For further information regarding our services for trademark filing through the Madrid System click here.
A registered trademark in Moldova grants protection in Pridnestrovie (Transnitria). This territory is disputed; owners of a registered trademark in Moldova may have difficulties enforcing their rights.
It is not necessary for a trademark to be in use in Moldova in order for it to register.
If you register a combined trademark (which includes both word elements and figurative elements) in Moldova, 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.
In Moldova, opposition actions may be filed by third parties against a local trademark application within three (3) months after its publication, which takes place after the formal examination. The probabilities of success for an opposition will vary in each case depending on the circumstances.
Although a trademark does not have to be in use in order for it to register, it must not go unused for longer than five years after registration or it will become vulnerable to cancellation actions based on lack of use of the trademark.
Registered trademarks in Moldova have a validity of ten (10) years from the application date and can be renewed indefinitely for further periods of ten (10) years. The trademark renewal can be requested as early as six (6) months before the expiration date. It can also be requested during the grace period of six (6) months after expiration, upon payment of a late renewal fee.