The information in this article is intended as quick reference for a person or business thinking about Trademark Registration in Ghana. Trademark registration in Ghana is governed by the Trademarks Act of 2004, Act 664. Before an application for registration of trademark is submitted to the Registrar, it is advisable for a trademark lawyer to review the application and conduct a preliminary search.
The search is important to ensure that no identical trademarks have been registered or are pending registration. A preliminary search therefore ensures that registration conflicts are identified at the front end and dealt with, thereby saving you unnecessary time and additional expenses.
Once a determination is made that there are no conflicts associated with the trademark, an application can then be submitted with the appropriate fees to the Trademark Registry as specified under the Trademark Act, Act 662. It is important to note that applicants whose principal place of business is located outside Ghana are required to apply through local counsel.
After the application has been filed at the Trademark Registry, the Registrar will conduct a preliminary review to ensure that the right procedure was followed and all parts of the law have been complied with. The registrar will then evaluate the application and determine whether the ‘mark’ qualifies for registration. If a determination is made that the trademark is meets the general qualifications for registration, the trademark will be published in the Trademark Journal for potential opposition from third parties. Where the registrar determines that the trademark is not qualified for registration, the Registrar will notify the applicant or his lawyer and provide reasons for denying registration.
If there are no third party oppositions to registration and the registrar determines the trademark as qualified, it shall be duly registered by the Registrar and the applicant will be issued with an official certificate of registration. The registration of the trademark is good for a period of 10 years from the filing date of the application for registration. The registration may be renewed for consecutive periods of ten years once the prescribed fees are paid. A grace period of six months is allowed for late payment of the renewable fee upon payment of the prescribed late fees.
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