T.M.E.P. § 1004.01
Copy of Foreign Registration Required
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1004.01 Copy of Foreign Registration Required
Section 44(e) of the Trademark Act, 15 U.S.C. 1126(e), requires "a true copy, a photocopy, a certification, or a certified copy of the registration in the country of origin of the applicant." If a copy of the foreign registration is not included with the application as filed, the examining attorney will require submission of a copy of the foreign registration in the first Office action. The copy must show the name of the owner, the mark, and the goods or services for which the mark is registered.
If an applicant files more than one application in the United States based on the same foreign registration, the applicant must file a copy of the foreign registration for each of the United States applications.
In a §44(e) application, the examining attorney will not suspend the application pending submission of a copy of the foreign registration, unless the applicant establishes that it cannot obtain a copy of the foreign registration due to extraordinary circumstances (e.g., war or natural disaster). However, the examining attorney may suspend the application pending receipt of proof of renewal of the foreign registration (see TMEP §1004.01(a)).
1004.01(a) Status of the Foreign Registration
The foreign registration must be in force at the time the United States issues the registration based on that foreign registration. In re Societe D'Exploitation de la Marque Le Fouquet's, 67 USPQ2d 1784 (TTAB 2003); Marie Claire Album S.A. v. Kruger GmbH & Co. KG, 29 USPQ2d 1792 (TTAB 1993); Fioravanti v. Fioravanti Corrado S.R.L., 230 USPQ 36 (TTAB 1986), recon denied 1 USPQ2d 1304 (TTAB 1986). Appendix B of this manual lists the terms of registration in various foreign countries.
If the record indicates that the foreign registration will expire before the United States registration will issue, the examining attorney must require that an applicant submit a copy of the foreign registration that shows that the foreign registration has been renewed and will be in force at the time the registration issues in the United States. 37 C.F.R. 2.34(a)(3)(iii). If the applicant states that renewal is pending in the foreign country, the examining attorney should suspend the application pending receipt of proof of renewal.
If an applicant submits a certified copy or certification of the foreign registration that is certified by the foreign government agency that issued the foreign registration, the examining attorney should inquire concerning renewal only if the certified copy of the foreign registration indicates that the registration will expire after the date on which the foreign government agency issued the certified copy or certification of the foreign registration. For example, if a certified copy of a foreign registration was issued by the trademark agency in the foreign country on January 5, 2005, and the certified copy indicates that the registration expired on June 1, 2004, no inquiry is necessary. The Office presumes that the foreign country would not have issued a certified copy of the registration unless the registration had been renewed. This applies only to a certified copy or certification issued by the foreign trademark agency. If the copy of the registration is not certified by the foreign trademark agency, and the record indicates that the foreign registration will expire before the United States registration will issue, the examining attorney must require that the applicant submit a copy of the foreign registration showing that that the registration has been renewed.
If the examining attorney determines that the foreign registration is not in force, the examining attorney will refuse registration under §44(e). The applicant may amend the application to claim another basis. See TMEP §§806.03 et seq. regarding amendments to the basis.
For information about recent changes in the term of registration in a foreign country, examining attorneys may consult sources such as Trademarks Throughout the World (J. M. Politi) and World Trademark Law and Practice (Ethan Horwitz), available to Office employees in the Trademark Law Library.
1004.01(b) Translation of the Foreign Registration
If the foreign registration is not in English, the applicant must provide a translation. 37 C.F.R. 2.34(a)(3)(ii). The translator should sign the translation, but does not have to swear to the translation.