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Filing and registration
Do agents filing for registration of a mark on behalf of the owner require power of attorney? If so, is notarisation or legalisation required?
Agents need a signed power of attorney. No notarisation or legalisation is required.
What information and documentation must be submitted in a trademark registration application?
The information that must be submitted when filing an application is:
- the applicant’s full name and address;
- the full name, address, telephone and fax numbers and email address of the authorised attorney (if appointed);
- the full name and address, telephone and fax numbers and email address of an addressee for the documents served;
- a representation of the mark and an indication of its type (eg, word mark, device mark, three-dimensional mark or packaging, collective mark or sound mark) and whether it is in colour or black and white;
- a complete list of goods and services, according to class; and
- if priority is claimed, the number, date and country of the mark on which priority is based.
In case of marks not written in Latin or Greek characters, the application must include the mark’s transliteration into Latin or Greek characters. In addition to submitting a hard copy trademark application form, applicants must submit the completed form and an imprint of the mark electronically (on a CD or USB).
If the applicant is a domestic company, the necessary legal documents regarding the company and the authorisation of the person signing the power of attorney for the company are required. If the applicant is a domestic general or limited partnership company must submit a copy of its articles of incorporation. A public limited or limited liability company, it must submit copies from the general business registry. These documents must evidence the existing particulars of the company and persons vested with powers of representation.
Where the applicant is not a Greek resident, the power of attorney should also include a statement of its subordination to the jurisdiction of the Athens courts.
The application form must be accompanied by a document proving the payment of the application fee.
Following the entry into force of the EU General Data Protection Regulation, the Trademark Office notifies applicants/owners who are natural persons that their personal data and relevant recordals in the Hellenic Trademarks Register are considered to be in the public interest; as such, they are accessible by any third party and are stored indefinitely. Personal data that is not included in the Trademarks Register, but which is nonetheless provided by trademark applicants/owners or other parties during procedures with the Trademarks Office and the Administrative Trademarks Committee, is also stored indefinitely, unless the data subject requests its deletion within two years from the expiry of the trademark or on the completion of the relevant procedure. Therefore, along with their trademark application, applicants must file a related declaration that they have duly taken note of the above.
What rules govern the representation of the mark in the application?
Trademarks must be represented graphically and the representation must be clear and precise.
Are multi-class applications allowed?
Yes, multi-class applications are allowed.
Is electronic filing available?
Yes, electronic filing is possible through the Trademark Office’s special service. An electronic signature is required.
What are the application fees?
The official costs for filing a trademark application are:
- the e-deposit fee of €110 for the first class and €20 for each additional class up to 10 classes; and
- stamp duties of €6.
How are priority rights claimed?
Priority can be claimed only within six months from the date of filing an application in one of the signatory countries of the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property.
When claiming priority, the date, country and number of the trademark application on which priority is based must be specified. It must also be indicated whether priority is claimed for all or some of the goods or services.
The priority document must be:
- submitted within three months from filing the application in Greece; and
- accompanied with a translation.
Are trademark searches available or required before filing? If so, what procedures and fees apply?
Trademark searches are not required before filing. However, they are recommended to analyse the risk of possible objections. Searches are possible through the EU Intellectual Property Office, the World Intellectual Property Organisation Madrid Monitor and the TMVIEW databases. It is also important to consult the Trademark Office’s records.
What factors does the authority consider in its examination of the application?
The Trademark Office first examines formal requirements and, in case of irregularities or deficiencies, will invite the applicant to correct or supplement the application within one month.
Subsequently, an examiner checks for both absolute and relative grounds of refusal.
Does the authority check for relative grounds for refusal (eg, through searches)?
The examiner checks via searches for relative grounds for refusal.
If the authority raises objections to the application, can the applicant take measures to rectify the application? If so, what rules and procedures apply?
If the examiner raises objections it will invite the applicant to withdraw the application, restrict its scope of protection or file observations within one month from the invitation.
Can rejected applications be appealed? If so, what procedures apply?
An examiner’s decision to reject a trademark application in whole or in part is subject to recourse before the Administrative Trademark Committee within 60 days (90 days in the case of foreign residents) from the date of notification. The committee’s decision is subject to further recourse before the Administrative Court of First Instance.
When does a trademark registration formally come into effect?
Once a trademark has been accepted by an unassailable decision of the examiner or the Administrative Trademark Committee or in a final administrative court judgment, the word “registered” is noted in the trademark register and the trademark formally comes into effect.
What is the term of protection and how can a registration be renewed?
The term of protection is 10 years, which commences the day after an application is filed. The number of renewals is unlimited. For the renewal of a trademark, a related application is required, along with a power of attorney and the payment of the renewal fee. If renewal is not requested within the specified period, a trademark can still be renewed up to six months later on payment of a fine.
What registration fees apply?
There are no registration fees.
What is the usual timeframe from filing to registration?
The timeframe from filing to registration is hard to predict. On average, it is five to seven months, provided that:
- the examiner does not refuse the mark on absolute or relative grounds; and
- no opposition is filed.
Can third parties formally oppose an application? If so, on what grounds and what rules and procedures apply?
Third parties with a legitimate interest can oppose an application, invoking either absolute or relative grounds.
An opposition is examined by the Administrative Trademark Committee and must be filed in writing. The writ of opposition contains:
- the grounds of opposition;
- the opposed trademark;
- the identity of the opponent and that of the owner of the opposed mark;
- the extent of the opposition; and
- the particulars of the decision against which the opposition is directed.
Proof of use is provided as a defence during opposition proceedings. Accordingly, if the trademark on which the opposition is based has been registered for more than five years, the applicant can call on the opponent to submit evidence that:
- the mark has been used in respect of the relevant goods or services on which the opposition is based in the five years preceding the date of publication of the opposed application; or
- there are proper reasons for non-use.
Failure to meet these requirements will result in rejection of the opposition for procedural reasons and the case will not be examined on its merits.
What is the usual timeframe for opposition proceedings?
The term for filing an opposition is three months from the publication of the decision accepting the mark on the website of the Ministry of Economy and Development’s General Secretariat of Commerce and Consumer Protection. This term is not extendable. The opposition hearing is usually scheduled within three to five months from filing. The related decision is usually issued within five to eight months from its adjudication.
Are opposition decisions subject to appeal? If so, what procedures apply?
Administrative Trademark Committee decisions are subject to recourse before the Administrative Court of First Instance within 60 days (90 days in the case of foreign entities) from notification of the decision to the losing party. Decisions of the First-Instance Administrative Court are subject to appeal before the Administrative Court of Appeal.
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