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European trademark

A European trademark is valid in the twenty-eight countries of the European Union, presently consisting of:

Austria, Baltic States (Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia), Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and United Kingdom.

It is expected that in the middle long term the following countries will join the European Union and therefore the trademark laws: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Iceland.

A European trademark is also called a CTM. This is the abrreviation of Community TradeMark.

It is not possible to file or maintain a European trademark for just a few countries in the European Union: it is valid in all countries or none.

This is not only the advantage but also the disadvantage:

If you use your trademark in just a few countries of the European Union then you can acquire rights in all countries of the European Union on a very cost effective way without having to use the trademark in those other countries. Those other countries might become part of your market later if your commercial interest expands.

If a problem arises in one of the countries the ultimate result could be that the trademark cannot exist in that country (anymore) and the rights vested in the European trademark lapse.

Also you can use your European trademark registration to prohibit the use of a trademark in a country in which you yourself do not use. (N.B. there are exceptions on this an we are willing to assist you on that!)

We have a 1 page short description of the European trademark registration procedure. Would you like to receive it? Then click here.