FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS What Happens If I Don't Renew My Trademark In Time?

What happens if you don't renew your trademark on time?

What can you do about it?

All the answers are in this short video:



After your trademark registers, in most countries you get that registration for 10 years that you can renew for another 10, and then another 10, another 10 In Canada, that period is 15 years, probably going to be 10 years soon, but for now, it's 15, another 15, and another 15, if you need to renew.

The question is, what happens if you don't renew your trademark registration after that 10 or 15 years? What happens is that your trademark will be considered abandoned, so the Trademarks Office will not send you any reminders. What they're going to do is they're going to sit and wait and see if you, yourself, remember or your lawyers or your trademark agent or trademark attorneys are going to remind you to renew your trademark in time.

If you don't, the assumption is that you're not really interested in protecting the brand. One of the functions of a Trademarks Office is to clear out what they call the dead wood. If the trademark owner is not taking the steps to maintain registration, they assume that the trademark owner is not interested, and by doing that they clear out the way for new people, for new companies to claim that same brand.

You cannot usually revive your trademark registration. Once it's abandoned, it's abandoned. If you're still interested in having that brand, if you're lucky enough that nobody jumps ahead of you, yes, you can file a new trademark application for the same trademark, and hopefully you're going to be able to get that.

Interestingly, sometimes what happens is because the requirements and just local regulations with a Trademarks Office sometimes change, what was trademarkable 10 or 20 or 30 years ago may not necessarily be registrable now. It's not an issue with renewal, so there is no new examination of your trademark application. If your trademark registered 50 years ago and the rules changed, but your trademark is registered, it's easy for you to renew it. They're not going to say, "Well, you know what? The rules changed, and you can't renew it anymore," but if you let it lapse and it gets abandoned, and you have to file a new one, the new trademark application will be examined based on new rules. That doesn't guarantee you that the new one will also be registered.

It's extremely important not to miss those deadlines, and if you file your trademark yourself, make sure that you triple check to put it in your calendar 10 years, 15 years down the road to renew your trademark. If you have somebody else to do this for you, then make sure that they're still around, that they are not going to forget, and that they are still taking care of this. Again, with Trademark Factory, that's one of the things we do for our clients. Whenever we're registering your trademark, we'll put everything in our docketing system to make sure that whenever your renewal time comes, we will not forget about this, and we'll notify you and say, "Well, are you interested in renewing that brand?"

Just to give you an idea, renewal costs are nominal. The government fee will be a few hundred dollars. Our fee will be a few hundred dollars, depending on the package that you chose. If you've been in business with that brand for 10 or 15 years, renewal costs are going to be the least of your concerns.

Disclaimer: Please note that this post and this video are not and are not intended as legal advice. Your situation may be different from the facts assumed in this post or video. Your reading this post or watching this video does not create a lawyer-client relationship between you and Trademark Factory International Inc., and you should not rely on this post or this video as the only source of information to make important decisions about your intellectual property.