Today is the 65 th anniversary of the Nice Agreement which was created on June 15, 1957. This agreement classifies the different products and services that are protected by trademark registrations in 45 classes. The Nice Classification is adopted by most countries worldwide. A Committee of experts edits the classification every 5 years and publishes a new version every year. Decision 486 provides that the countries of the Andean Community (Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia) use it with all its current amendments.
4 tips you did not know about the Nice Classification to help speed up your trademark registration.
Content of the Nice Classification
The content of the Nice Classification is relevant to differentiate goods or services that a trademark will protect. To understand in a better way its content, applicants can divide it into two sections: the first section belongs to goods and the second section for services. Classes 01 to 34 distinguish the different products and classes 35 to 45 belong to services. In each of the classes we will find headings and explanatory notes that will be a guide for identifying products or services for the trademark to be registered.
How to use the Nice Classification.
1) Before proceeding with a trademark registration, it is necessary to determine what range of goods or services we are going to protect. In some cases, the business trades products or services that belong to different classes, so it is necessary to file several applications or multi-class applications in the countries that allow it. To find the classification of the product or service we wish to protect, it is necessary to check the latest edition, 11-2022. The 12-2023 edition of the Nice Classification will enter into force soon, however, the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) has not issued any general remarks until it comes into effect.
2) It is useful to use online tools such as TM Class of EUIPO (European Union Intellectual Property Office) at the following link and WIPO IP Portal where you can search for the specific good or service in the database of the Alphabetical List of the Nice Classification.
3) The following step will be to analyze the general indications and recommendations of each class. Whoever wishes to register a trademark will find that the headings and general indications are related to the area that the product or service will belong to. In this way it is possible to accurately classify the good or service to be sold, or to find additional products to be protected within the same class, or products in which the market will eventually expand.
4) If the headings, the alphabetical list and the explanatory notes of each class do not help to identify the goods or services of the trademark, we suggest to consult a professional who will analyze the various technical criteria to correctly determine the classification.
To avoid delays and additional costs, it is important that the trademarks are correctly classified, so it is advisable to have the help of an expert. If the classification is not correct, at the time of the formal examination, the trademark office will issue an office action against a certain product or service. In such cases, the applicant will have time to answer the office action and clarify, amend, or delete the misclassified goods or services. Once the description of goods or services is found to be correct, the trademark will pass the examination and will be published in the official gazette so that third parties have the opportunity to file oppositions.
All businesses are different, so we will be glad to help you with the correct classification of the services and products you want to protect and thus avoid complex procedures and delays in obtaining the registration of your trademark.