Cancellation of a Registered Trademark in India

The dynamics of business keeps on changing. There might arise a new competitor, each day. So, for keeping the business concerns secured with the identity, a trademark is applied. Trademark registration involves the registration of a unique expression which can either be a company name, logo, or any special mark. Trademark authorities generally grant a trademark approval, only after satisfying the eligibility of the applicant under the Trademarks Act, 1999.

There might be several reasons for rejection of Trademark registration application. But once a trademark is approved, it places an obligation on the applicant to make sure that the use of a trademark is done with a good intention and with the appropriate goods or service or for the purpose for which it was applied.

In severe cases, for non-usage or inappropriate use of Trademark, the trademark authorities can issue an order for cancellation of registration of Trademark and levy a penalty under Section 103 of the Trademark Act, 1999 on its registered owner.

Here in this post, you will get to know about the various instances at which trademark registrations are canceled by the trademarking authorities.

Every day there is a new invention, new brand, new company which stands up with better technology and techniques which aligns new trademark applications. Thus, compared with new trademarks, an obsolete trademark becomes irrelevant for its applicant.

The Trademark authorities after giving approval to trademark applications keep a strict watch over their usage by their applicants. They might even cancel the registered trademark under the following circumstances:

  • It is kept unutilized for 3 months before the date of filing of trademark application and 5 years after registration of the trademark.
  • It is applied with the intention of not actually using the mark.
  • It is applied with the intention of deceiving someone or for any other inappropriate intention.

Cancellation of Trademark by its Registered Owner  

Prescribed under Section 50 (1)(b), a registered proprietor of the registered trademark can also apply for the cancellation of his Trademark registration. There might be situations where the approved trademark of the registered owner:

  • Conflicts any existing brand mark.
  • Becomes less or of no use
  • Deceives public interest
  • Creates confusion with other marks etc.

For all the above reasons or any other reason which he deems fit, the registered owner of the trademark can apply for cancellation of his trademark registration/removal of the trademark from the register of Trademark Registrar.

Cancellation of Trademark by Other Persons

While it might take years for a trademark application to confirm, but it is all time free for any person to apply for cancellation of a registered trademark, provided that it should be affecting the person filling application for cancellation.

An appeal for cancellation of registration of trademark whether in process or approved, by any person affected by the existence of such registration can only be filed on the following grounds (Section 50 (1)(c)):

  • When it is being used by any person other that is its registered owner for any other purpose not related to the registered trademark agreement formed Section 49 (1)(a).
  • When it deceives or confuses any existing trademark.
  • When it has been applied falsely or on the basis of unjustified reasons by its registered owner.
  • When it is being used for some other purpose or with some different intention other than the actual reason for which it was applied.

Forms for Cancellation of Trademark Registration 

Before issuing an order of cancellation of a registered trademark to the registered owner of the Trademark, the trademarking authorities make an in-depth analysis and know for the intention of the applicant along with the evidence placed by him while filling the aforesaid application. Depending on the case, the following forms have to be used for filling cancellation of trademark registration:

  1. Form TM – O: For filling appeal for cancellation of trademark violating provisions under Geographical Indication of Goods (Regulation and Protection) Act, 1999.
  2. Form TM – U: For filling appeal for cancellation of trademark registration by the registered owner or by any other person opposing the registered trademark under Section 50 of the Trademark Act.
  3. Form TM – P: For filing a request for making amendments required in the register of Trademark Registrar related to canceled or cancellation of trademark or registered owner. 


Q1. Where an application for cancellation of trademark registration is to be filed?

An application for the cancellation of trademark registration has to be filed with the Trademark Registry in a prescribed way.

Q2. Is a cancellation decision taken by the Registrar appealable?

Yes, it can be appealed before the IPAB (Intellectual Property Appellate Board).

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