Intellectual Property

South Africa
Smit & Van Wyk Patent, Trademark & Registered Designs

Trademark Search

Search for possible similar Trademarks

It is always advisable to do a trademark search before the application is filed. In order to be considered register-able, your trademark must be capable of distinguishing your goods or services from those of your competitors. To this end, we can conduct searches through the records at the South African Trademarks Office.

Trademark search will provide an indication of whether there are existing trademarks which are identical or similar to yours. Foreign trademark searches may also be conducted – please contact us, should you wish to have a search conducted through the trademark offices of foreign countries. A search has to be conducted to make sure there is no similar or identical trademark on the register preventing the registration of your trademark.

Trademarks can be transferred through assignment – in other words, trademarks may be bought or sold like other commodities. Alternatively, you may wish to license your trademarks to another manufacturer, who will then pay royalties for the use of your trademarks. A trademark, like a patent, may even be hypothecated to serve as security.

Once a trademark is registered in South Africa, it needs to be renewed every 10 years to stay in force. However, provided you continue renewing your trademark registration in South Africa, your rights to the trademark may last indefinitely. A registered trademark can be protected forever, provided it is renewed every 10 years upon payment of the prescribed renewal fee. If your registered trademark has not been used in South Africa for a continuous period of 5 years, another person may apply to have it removed from the Register.

Trademark Registration Requirements

In order to register your trademark, we require the follwoing information. This is necessary, as one has to file a separate trademark application in each of the classes related to your product(s) / service(s). Trademarks applications are filed at the South African Trademarks Office (CIPC) and foreign trademark registrations may be obtained should you wish to market your product in foreign countries.

Trademark Search – We will advise if a trademark search is required.

Applicant – Full names and a copy of ID. Physical and postal address of the applicant.

Trademark – A copy of your intended trademark (name, slogan or logo). If it is a logo, an electronic copy of the logo must be supplied.

Class(es) – Details of all products or services that you intend applying the trademark to. Describe the relevant goods or services arroding to the Nice Classification of Goods and Services.

Invoice Details – Entity to be invoiced and VAT registration number (if applicable)

Countries to File In – We need to quote on each seperate Country or System.

International Trademark Search

There are seperate trademark search websites for Eurpoe, U.S, Australia, ARIPO, China and South Africa. To avoid infringing on someone else’s trademark, you need to search for similar trademarks that have already been registered in the juristrictions where you wish to register your trademark.

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What We Can Do For You

South Africa

South Africa

We assist with the filing, prosecution and enforcement of your patent, design, trade mark and plant breeders’ rights in South Africa. Copyright dispute resolution and litigation. Franchise agreements and negotiation. Company registrations. Domain name registration and protection.

Patents in Africa, Trademarks in Africa

File in Africa

Foreign clients who wish to file patent, design and trade mark applications in South Africa and across Africa (including OAPI and ARIPO). Our firm acts as a patent agent as well as a trade mark agent for foreign clients who wish to protect their Intellectual Property in Africa.

World, International Protection

International Protection

Local clients who wish to file and protect patent , design and trade mark applications internationally. Our services include the search, filing and renewal of patents and trade marks in foreign markets such as Australia, China, the United States, Canada, Europe, Japan, etc.

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Domain Names

Domain Names

In simple terms, a domain name is the address through which internet users can access a website, for example, www.companyname.co.za or www.companyname.africa or www.companyname.com. Although these...

Common Law Tort of Passing Off

Common Law Tort of Passing Off

A question that inevitably arises is whether unregistered trade marks are afforded protection in South Africa and if so, to what extent. South African trade mark law is hybrid legal system governed...

South Africa

South Africa

The Smit & Van Wyk team of experienced intellectual property attorneys are able to provide legal advice regarding your patents, trade marks and copyright. We are a specialist...