The Trade Marks Act and the Trade Mark Regulations are the two laws that govern trademark registration in Nigeria – they’re known as the Trade Mark legislation in Nigeria. This legislation is essentially responsible for setting up patents, trademarks, and commercial laws in the country.
The Nigerian Trademarks, Patents and Designs Registry, Commercial Law Department, Federal Ministry of Industry, and Trade and Investment are the government agencies responsible for giving trademarks in Nigeria. Although only the Trademarks, Patents, and Design Registry are responsible for the actual registration of trademarks, the other three agencies play key roles in the entire process, before the trademark is given to the individual or company.
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What Laws Govern Trademark Registration in Nigeria?
Here are the following laws that guide how trademarks of individuals and companies are registered in Nigeria.
- The Trademarks Act, CAP YT13 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (“LFN”), 2004 (the “Trademarks Act”).
- The Trademarks Regulation, 1967.
- The Merchandise Marks Act, CAP M10 LFN, 2004 (the “Merchandise Marks Act”).
- The Trademarks Malpractices (Miscellaneous Offences) Act, CAP T12 LFN 2004.
- The Counterfeit and Fake Drugs and Unwholesome Processed Foods (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, CAP C34 LFN, 2004.
- The Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention) Act, 2015.
What can I Register as a Trademark in Nigeria
The trademark registration process in Nigeria is very strict and precise, as such, there’s a limit to what’s eligible for registration as a trademark within the country.
- A combination of, or any of the following; device, brand, heading, label, ticket, name, signature, word, letter, and numeral.
For the above to be eligible, it must have at least (if not all) one of the following documents attached to it;
- Name of individual, company, or firm
- Signature of the applicant of registration, or the business predecessor
- An invented word, phrase, or sentence.
- A word, sentence, or phrase that has no direct reference to the character or quality of goods and/or services being sold. Also, the word, phrase, or sentence must not be in line with a geographical name, or surname.
- Any other distinctive mark.