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What is well known trademark?

A “well-known trade mark”, in relation to any goods or services, means a mark which has become so to the substantial segment of the public which uses such goods or receives such services that the use of such mark in relation to other goods or services would be likely to be taken as indicating a connection in the course of trade or rendering of services between those goods or services and a person using the mark in relation to the first-mentioned goods or services.

The Indian Trademark Law accords extraordinary protection to trade marks that are “well known” and safeguards them from the vices of infringement or passing off. The Indian Intellectual Property Office recognizes well-known trademarks in India on the basis of their international, national and cross border reputation.

The Trade Marks Act, 1999 provides protection to well-known trademarks at two levels-

  • Against the registration of any similar marks.
  • Action against the misuse of well-known trademark

A list of Trade Marks which have been recognized as Well-known trade marks in India by the Indian Intellectual Property Office can be accessed at http://164.100.176.38/tmrpublicsearch/wellknownmarks.aspx .

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