We live in a period with a global trade and increased trade between countries.
In particular, the developments in the field of internet results in globalization in the trading field.
It has been possible for you to introduce your products and trademark and find customers throughout the world through Internet.
Trademarks provide proprietary right and legal protection for the countries where they are registered in accordance with the trademark law.
If you have no trademark registration in Turkey, your trademark is not protected legally.
If your trademark is not registered in Turkey, you may have difficulty in legal terms.
If your trademark is registered in the name of other firms, it may be impossible for you to carry out a commercial activity legally.
You must primarily investigate if your trademark is appropriate for registration with the TPE to register your trademark in Turkey.
If your trademark is eligible for registration with the TPE after the investigation, you should make a trademark application.
If it is found in the investigation that a trademark which is the same with or similar to your trademark is registered in the name of another firm, then it would be disadvantageous for you to carry out a commercial activity on the Turkish market.
In this case, you must get permission of the registration owner or have the trademark registration canceled in order to carry out commercial activity with your trademark.
It is primarily required to consider the registration date of the trademark to bring an action for nullity of the trademark because the Turkish Law includes a period of limitation for 5 years.
The period of limitation for 5 years does not apply to malevolent trademark registrations but the bad faith must be proven.
If your trademark is registered in Turkey, it is required to investigate if the registered firm is malevolent.
Such firm may have used the trademark in good faith by chance and have registered it in its own name. Occasional similarities are frequently seen in the trademarks consisting of generic and common expressions in particular. In such cases, it is difficult to allege that the registered trademark has been obtained illegally and in bad faith.
In such case, it is more logical to contact with the registration owner and purchase the trademark or obtain permission to use the trademark.
However, if your trademark has been registered in bad faith, it is possible to get a result with an action for nullity.
Evidence is required to prove that the registration has been obtained in bad faith (for instance: that you have a commercial relationship with the registered firm, that your trademark is well-known).
If your trademark does not consists of the frequently used generic words and thus it is not possible to mention about an incidental similarity, it is possible to cancel the registered trademark.
In addition, as encountered frequently, if you have a commercial relationship with the firm registered your trademark and even such firm is a dealer or client of you, then bad faith is obvious and it is possible to get a positive result with an action for nullity.
Most of the foreign trademarks registered in Turkey are produced by dealers; your dealer or partner in Turkey may have registered your trademark in its own name without any notice to you! Once your commercial relation ends with your Turkish dealer and partner, you may be unable to use your trademark in Turkey.
ONCE YOU LEARN THAT YOUR DEALER / PARTNER HAS REGISTERED YOUR TRADEMARK IN ITS OWN NAME, YOU MUST INITIATE A LEGAL PROCEEDING WITHOUT ANY DELAY; OTHERWISE PERIOD OF LIMITATION and LOSSES OF LEGAL RIGHTS ARE SUFFERED!
On the other hand, some people find the trademarks developed and grew fairs and Internet and register them in their own name in bad faith like in the internet domain names. In such case, you may ensure nullity of the trademark obtained in bad faith in order to prove that your trademark is a well-known and growing trademark on the market.
It is required for Attorneys to know the Trademark registration process and TPE practices to get a positive result in any trademark actions to be brought in Turkey.
Our Attorneys act as a Trademark and Patent Attorney in the TPE and they also act as an Expert towards the Turkish Courts and Administrative Authorities.
Our Law & Patent Office has been providing an Attorney and Consultant service in the Actions for Nullity of Trademark since 1997.