No, in Ecuador, there is no need to use a trademark to obtain a trademark registration. Nevertheless, the Ecuadorian Trademark Office can cancel a granted trademark for lack of use during the last three years.
There is no legal obligation to get a trademark in Ecuador to sell or promote your products or services; nevertheless, to obtain exclusive rights over the sign, it must be registered. Without a registration, in case somebody is copying your trademark, there is little you can do about it. For this reason, when you are planning or doing business in Ecuador, you have to register your trademarks locally. To register your brand, you will have to file a local application before the Ecuadorian Trademark Office.
Having a trademark in another country does not create any rights in Ecuador. To have a right in Ecuador, you have to apply to the local authorities. Trademarks granted in Andean Community Countries can give you the right to oppose in another member country.
Before offering your products or services, it is advisable to perform a trademark search in Ecuador. The reason is simple; you do not want to use a previously registered trademark in Ecuador to avoid a trademark infringement lawsuit.
We also advise you to perform a search before filing a trademark application to avoid unnecessaries conflicts or delays during the process.
The Ecuadorian Trademark Office -SENADI- is implementing policies to increase its efficiency. At the moment, it is possible to request a local trademark search, pay the fees in a local bank, and the trademark office will send the results via email. Trademark searches in Ecuador are only available in Spanish, and there is no online database available.
This trademark search will perform an exact match search and also include other trademarks that contain similar search terms. The results granted by the Ecuadorian Trademark Office will contain:
- Similar trademarks - Distinct variations as plurals or gender - Obvious misspelled words - Sound-alike works - Other accepted spellings -Similar signs registered or applied for registration in any class
You should also be familiar with the international trademark classification of goods and services, AKA Nice Classification. This classification is essential because trademarks are registered in a specific class, but they are also relations between them.
It would help if you looked closer to trademarks registered in Ecuador that were granted in the same class or classes as your brand and in classes that could be connected by consumers.
Once you have a list of similar brands, you have to study one by one to see if there is a risk of confusion and cover identical or similar goods or services.
Our Ecuadorian trademark attorneys can help if you have a question about your search or want a legal opinion.
he cost will include the official fees plus the professional fees of the Ecuadorian trademark lawyers handling your case. We have developed an online estimator that can give you the exact cost of your trademark in Ecuador in a few clicks.
No, Ecuador does not accept multiclass applications. One application must be filed per class, each one with its fee.
Foreign applicants should appoint a trademark attorney admitted to practice in Ecuador. We can help you with that.
The trademark application must contain:
-the applicant’s complete name, address, nationality; -description of the product(s) or service(s) covered by trademark; -a digital sample of the logo (if any);
In case you claim a priority, we will need the country of origin, registration date, and application number, as well as a certified copy of the priority document.
Once the office verifies that the application complies with all the requirements, it will order the publication of the trademark application. This process will take approximately three weeks.
In Ecuador Power of Attorney have to be in Spanish and require to have an Apostille or legalization before an Ecuadorian consulate. Our firm has implemented a solution so you can avoid the Apostille process.
Yes. About three weeks after filing, the Ecuadorian Trademark Office will publish the application. Third parties have 30 working days to file an opposition. This period can be extended once for another 30 working days if necessary to present more evidence.
The applicant will also have 30 working days to respond to the opposition with one equal extension. There is no obligation to file a response, but we hardly recommended to do so.
Additionally, before the issuance of the corresponding resolution, it is possible to file a final pleading.
A smooth application procedure can take between 9 to 12 months. We call a smooth application one with no opposition or office actions.
Office actions can come at two different moments. The first, just after the application, and they will be based on formalities or classifications. The second, after the end of the opposition period, and they will be based on absolute or relative grounds of refusal.
Applicants will have a non-extendible one month to reply to an Office action. In case you do not file a proper answer to the office action, the trademark office will declare the trademark application abandoned.
Trademarks in Ecuador are valid for ten years from the granting date, and they can be renewed as many times as needed. You will need to file a trademark renewal application and pay a renewal fee within six months before or six months after the expiration date.
The trademark owner is obliged to use the trademark granted, in case of lack of use, after three years, the trademark office can cancel it for lack of use. You also should renew the trademark after ten years to keep it alive.
There is no need to file evidence of use or something similar.
A registered trademark can be canceled for different reasons:
- Lack of use: if you have not used your trademark for three years, it can be canceled. - The trademark lost its distinctiveness.
Additionally, a nullity action against the granting resolution might be filed if:
- The trademark is identical, or similar, to another trademark that was declared to be well known at the moment of filing. - The trademark was incorrectly granted. - The application included false information - The registration was obtained in bad faith - A person obtained the registration with a relationship with the rightful owner of the trademark in another country.
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