Opposing a trademark in India [With a sample opposition]

If you are looking to oppose an opponent’s mark, here are some tips that can help you make a stronger case. A sample trademark opposition is attached in this post. Although the present form of trademark opposition is TM-O (as per the Trade Marks Rules, 2017), however, the pleadings in the sample opposition remain the same.

Procedure of a Trademark Opposition (Section 21)

Firstly, the trademark application is filed, the Registry will examine the application to determine whether the mark is a distinctive mark or not. If the Examiner is satisfied that the applied mark is distinctive enough and that there are no similar marks already existing in the Trade Register, then the said mark is published in the Trademark Journal. Further, post such publication, the said mark is open for opposition by any third party within a period of 4 months from such publication. Accordingly, if any third party opposes the mark, the opposition proceedings shall be initiated and upon the decision of registrar, the mark will then be registered depending on the outcome of the same.

Notice of Opposition

  • Within the period of 4 months of publication (advertisement) of the mark in the Trademarks Journal, any person can oppose a trademark by filing a Notice of Opposition by way of Form TM-O along with the prescribed fee.
  • A Notice of Opposition contains an application against which opposition is sought and the grounds for opposing the mark. It is first sent to the Registry for review and if all the requirements have complied, then the Registry serves the Notice on the other party (applicant of the trademark).
  • After receiving notice by the registry a  counter-statement must be filed within the 2 months statutory deadline on Form TM-O along with the prescribed fee by the applicant.



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Bharat Sharma

Bharat is a tech-savvy lawpreneur and graduating student who is ambitious about working in the field of intellectual property and commercial laws. He has completed his credit course in IP and Sustainable Product Design from Harvard University. He is responsible for executing the expansion plans of the blog. He writes when its right.

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