Trademark Registration In Vietnam: Procedure, Requirements & Costs

This comprehensive guide will walk you through everything you need to know about trademark registration in Vietnam, from the reasons to register a trademark to the step-by-step process and common pitfalls to avoid.

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    trademark registration in vietnam

    Vietnam, a rapidly growing economy in Southeast Asia, has become a hotspot for companies wishing to grow their operations. One critical aspect of safeguarding your business interests is securing a trademark. A trademark is a distinctive image, pattern, or phrase that is used to distinguish and identify a certain commodity or service from others. A word, phrase, symbol, emblem, sound, or even a mix of these can be used to describe it. For companies expanding into Vietnam’s dynamic market, registering a trademark in Vietnam is a vital step in safeguarding your brand reputation and preventing competitors from exploiting your intellectual property. 

    This comprehensive guide will walk you through everything you need to know about trademark registration in Vietnam, from the reasons to register a trademark to the step-by-step process and common pitfalls to avoid. Whether you are a local entrepreneur or a foreign investor looking to start a business in Vietnam, understanding how to register for a trademark in Vietnam is essential for protecting your brand.

    Why Register a Trademark in Vietnam?

    There are several compelling reasons to register for a trademark in Vietnam:

    • Brand Protection: Registering a trademark gives you the sole rights to utilize your brand name, logo, or slogan in Vietnam. This helps you keep control over how your goods or services are portrayed in the marketplace and discourages rivals from emulating your brand.
    • Enhanced Brand Recognition: A registered trademark signifies legitimacy and builds trust with Vietnamese consumers. It helps you differentiate yourself from competitors and establish a strong brand identity in the industry. 
    • Legal Enforcement: Having a registered trademark gives you the ability to sue counterfeiters in the event of trademark infringement. By doing this, you safeguard the value of your brand and make sure you enjoy the rewards of your hard-earned reputation.
    • Investment Protection: A registered trademark is an important asset. It can be applied to obtain permits, draw in investors, and raise your company’s total worth in Vietnam.

    How to Perform a Trademark Search in Vietnam?

    To make sure that your intended mark is not already in use, it is essential to carry out a comprehensive trademark search before moving forward with trademark registration. 

    Here’s how to search for a trademark in Vietnam: 

    Online Database Search

    You can search for already-registered trademarks using an online database offered by Vietnam’s National Office of Intellectual Property (NOIP).

    Professional Services 

    Engaging a professional service or a trademark attorney can help in conducting a comprehensive search and interpreting the results accurately.

    Procedure for Trademark Registration in Vietnam

    The process of trademark registration in Vietnam involves several steps:

    Filing the Application

    Submit your trademark application to the NOIP. This includes providing a detailed description of the trademark, the products or services it will be utilized for, and the applicant’s information.

    Formal Examination 

    To ensure that the application satisfies all procedural criteria, the NOIP will carry out a formal examination.

    Publication 

    After passing the formal review, the application will be made available for objection by publishing it in the Industrial Property Official Gazette.

    Substantive Examination

    To make sure the trademark satisfies all substantive standards, the NOIP will thereafter conduct a substantive examination.

    Registration Decision 

    If the trademark passes the substantive examination, the NOIP will issue a decision to register the trademark and publish it in the Gazette.

    Certificate Issuance 

    Finally, the trademark registration certificate will be issued.

    Requirements for Trademark Registration in Vietnam

    To register for a trademark in Vietnam, you must meet the following requirements:

    1. Applicant Information: Name, address, and nationality of the applicant.
    2. Trademark Details: A precise depiction of the trademark.
    3. Products/Services List: A comprehensive inventory of the products or services connected to the brand, classified according to the Nice Classification.
    4. Power of Attorney: A power of attorney is necessary if the application is submitted through a representative.
    5. Priority Claim: A claim for priority, if appropriate, based on an application that was previously submitted in a different nation. 

    Duration and Validity of Trademarks in Vietnam

    A trademark in Vietnam is registered and becomes effective 10 years from the date of filing. The registration is renewable for successive 10-year periods. The owner is responsible for making sure the trademark is used and renewed on time in order to keep it valid. 

    Cost of Trademark Registration in Vietnam

    The cost of trademark registration in Vietnam varies based on several factors, including the number of classes of goods or services and whether you use a professional service. 

    Generally, the costs include:

    • Application Fees: These are payable to the NOIP and vary depending on the number of classes.
    • Examination Fees: Costs associated with conducting a formal and thorough trademark examination.
    • Publication Fees: Costs associated with publishing the trademark in the Gazette.
    • Attorney Fees: If you use a trademark attorney or a professional service, additional fees will apply.

    Common Mistakes to Avoid When Registering a Trademark in Vietnam

    Several pitfalls can hinder the trademark registration process in Vietnam. 

    Here’s how to avoid them:

    • Failing to Conduct a Trademark Search: If a similar trademark already exists, neglecting to perform a comprehensive search may result in unforeseen delays and difficulties.
    • Submitting an Incomplete Application: Make sure your application complies with the formatting guidelines provided by the NOIP and contains all relevant information.
    • Choosing a Non-Distinctive Trademark: Generic terms, descriptive phrases, or common symbols are unlikely to be approved.
    • Not Addressing Oppositions Effectively: If you face opposition during the registration process, promptly respond with a well-founded defence.

    Trademark Infringement and Enforcement in Vietnam

    When someone utilizes a mark that is confusingly similar to or identical to a registered trademark without authorization, it is considered trademark infringement. 

    Enforcement options in Vietnam include:

    • Administrative Actions: Filing a complaint with the NOIP or relevant authorities.
    • Civil Litigation: Taking legal action in civil courts to seek damages and injunctions.
    • Criminal Prosecution: In severe cases, pursuing criminal charges against infringers.
    • Customs Measures: Requesting customs to detain counterfeit goods at the border.

    Conclusion

    In order to safeguard their brand and obtain a competitive advantage in the market, firms must register their trademarks in Vietnam. Businesses may successfully protect their intellectual property by being aware of the registration procedure, specifications, expenses, and enforcement methods. 

    If you are looking to register your business in Vietnam, OnDemand International experts can assist you with business incorporation and can further help you in getting virtual office space, tax registration, and other business services. Contact us to register your business in Vietnam today.

    FAQ’s

    The process of registering a trademark in Vietnam normally takes 12 to 18 months, although it can be longer depending on factors like opposition proceedings.

    While the NOIP website provides information on trademarks, the application process itself is not currently available online. An application must be submitted in person.

    If an opposition is filed, the NOIP will review the opposition and your response before making a final decision on the registration.

    By submitting a renewal application to the NOIP and paying the necessary costs before to the trademark’s expiration date, you can extend its validity.