INDIA: Trademarks Registry’s mass abandonment of trademark applications

Since March 29th, 2016 the Registry has begun to clear its backlog of pending applications and oppositions. Until this April 1st, the Registrar's office has abandoned about two hundred thousand applications and twenty thousand oppositions.

The reason why applications are being abandoned is mainly due to non-filing of response to the examination report. The Registrar's office is solely considering responses which were found to be uploaded in Internal module and has failed to consider responses which were filed physically at their office or emailed.

Regarding the opposed applications, they are being abandoned for non-filing of counter-statement. The Registrar's office failed to consider the counter statements which were filed physically at their office but were not uploaded properly in the module for counter-statement by the Registry's officials, nor have they checked whether the notices of opposition were properly served on the applicant.

In light of the aforementioned, several applications have been wrongly abandoned by the Indian Registrar's office.

This matter has been taken up by the attorneys with the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks. In a recent meeting with the Trademark Attorneys Association in Mumbai, The Controller General has assured that all applications which have been wrongly abandoned will be reinstated on receipt of representation from the attorneys and applicants. As a result, the Trademark Attorneys Association filed a writ petition before High Court regarding this Trademarks Registry’s enterprise.

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