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Cambodian IP News.

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Trademarks When Starting a Business in Cambodia

When starting a business in Cambodia, it is essential to understand the trademark registration process to protect your brand identity and prevent others from using similar marks. Here are some key points regarding trademark registration in Cambodia:

  1. Trademark System: Cambodia operates under a "first-to-file" system, meaning that the first person or entity to file a trademark application will have priority over others for that specific mark.

  2. Trademark Office: The Ministry of Commerce's Department of Intellectual Property Rights is responsible for the registration and administration of trademarks.

  3. Application Process: To register a trademark, you need to file an application with the DIPR. It is advisable to seek the assistance of a local attorney or agent familiar with Cambodian trademark law to navigate the application process.

  4. Trademark Classes: Trademarks are categorized into classes according to the International Nice Classification of Goods and Services (though Cambodia is not an official member of the treaty). You must identify the relevant classes for your goods or services when filing the application.

  5. Examination and Publication: After filing, the DIPRwill examine your application for compliance with formal requirements. If accepted and registered, your trademark will be published in the Official Gazette for potential opposition by third parties.

  6. Opposition Period: Once published, there is a three-month opposition period during which any party may oppose the registration of your trademark.

  7. Registration and Protection: If your trademark application is successful and no oppositions are raised, the DIPR will issue a Certificate of Trademark Registration. Trademark protection in Cambodia lasts for ten years and can be renewed indefinitely.

  8. Enforcement: In case of trademark infringement, it is crucial to take prompt legal action to protect your rights. It is up to you as a business owner to pro-actively monitor the market for infringement, and to take the necessary action. The DIPR will not do this for you.

  9. Business Names: the name of your incorporated business entity is not automatically protected as a trademark. It is advisable to perform a search for your business name in the trademark registry before incorporating, and protecting your name as both a business name and a trademark.


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