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Oh Canada! Trademark Differences with our Northern

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Canada is a substantial market for our U.S. clients. It has a population over 35m and a GDP exceeding $1.5 trillion. Protecting a trademark in Canada is analogous to that in the United States but with some significant differences.

Issue

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Federal Basis

Only if used in interstate or international commerce. However, meeting the interstate commerce threshold is fairly easy.

No state registration…only federal and this is permitted if only in a single province.

International Classes

$275 - $325 per International Class (45 classes possible).

Only pay one filing fee regardless of how many classes are involved.  Currently $250 (Canadian dollars).

Specimens

Must show evidence of actual use in commerce.

Not required in Canada.

Opposition Period

One month.

Two months.

Renewals

10-year terms.

15-year terms.

Evidence of Use

U.S. requires proof of continued use between years 5 and 6 and then at 10-year renewals.

No such requirement but mark can be expunged after 3 years of non-use.

Supplemental Register

Descriptive marks can be placed in this purgatory that does enjoy advantages. After five (5) years of substantially exclusive use there is a presumption the mark has acquired secondary meaning and may be eligible for protection on the Primary Register.

No supplemental registrations.






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