In Belarus, trademark registration is mandatory to be granted rights over a trademark, as it is a "first to file" jurisdiction. The trademark applications must be filed with the National Center of Intellectual Property (NCIP).
Belarus is also 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.
Registering a trademark in Belarus via the Madrid system is significantly faster than via local registration, unless one chooses to request the accelerated examination. For further information on the accelerated process see our FAQ section below.
It is not necessary for a trademark to be in use at the time of application or registration. However, prior use may be useful as it can help overcome an objection raised on the grounds of lack of distinctiveness.
The registration process includes an examination to check whether the mark complies with the requirements for registration as well as a search for prior identical or similar trademarks. The process does not contemplate a formal publication or opposition system. Trademark application details are not available to the public. However, interested parties may request copies of a particular application and file informal observations (letters of protest) with the trademarks office during the process.
Once registration has been granted, the trademark will be published in the Official Bulletin and its details made public.
If you register a combined trademark (which includes both word elements and figurative elements) in Belarus, the exclusive right to use the trademark is limited to a use of 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 take legal actions against the trademark. The probabilities of success for such actions will vary in each case depending on the circumstances.
If you would like for the figurative or design elements of your trademark to be considered when assessing your trademark for registration in Belarus (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.
Although it is not necessary for a trademark to be in use in order for it to register, it must not remain unused for periods of three (3) years after registration otherwise it becomes vulnerable to cancellation actions based on lack of use. For trademarks registered before January 25th, 2010, that period is of five (5) years.
In Belarus, trademarks are registered for a term of ten (10) years that starts on the application date. They can then be renewed indefinitely for periods of ten (10) years. The trademark renewal can be requested as early as a year prior to the expiration date. There is also a grace period of six (6) months after the expiration during which the renewal can still be requested upon payment of additional fees.