Trademarks may also fail to be registered for other reasons

Your trademark may also fail to be registered because of any of the following reasons.

The mark includes a name or surname used in Finland

A surname is not, however, an obstacle to registration if it forms a part of the applicant’s name or if it is also used as a first name or a common noun for an object or a thing, for instance Heather/heather (in Finnish Kanerva/kanerva) or Smith/smith (in Finnish Seppä/seppä).
Otherwise you can overcome the surname obstacle by getting the consent of all holders of the surname.

You can search for surnames used in Finland on the Population Register Centre's website.

The mark is contrary to law and order, or to morality

For example, it is not possible to register a mark that glorifies drugs.

The mark is misleading in terms of the qualities of the product or service

For example, if the applicant is Finnish, the trademark must not give the impression of France, like “Parfum de Paris". You can overcome the obstacle by reducing the list of goods so that it includes only products which come from the country in question.

The mark includes an official emblem (a national flag or the armorial bearings of a Finnish municipality, for instance) or something liable to be confused with them

You need a permission to register such a mark. For instance regarding the Finnish flag or the coat of arms of Finland, you need a permission of the Finnish Ministry of the Interior, and regarding armorial bearings of a Finnish municipality, a permission of the municipality in question.

WIPO keeps a list of international emblems, official signs and hallmarks indicating control and warranty, armorial bearings, flags, and other emblems and names protected under Article 6ter of the Paris Convention. Go to the 6ter database on the WIPO website.

The mark infringes the distinctive title of another's protected literary or artistic work, or it infringes another's copyright or right to a photo or protected design

You can overcome the obstacle by getting the consent of the copyright holder.

The mark is liable to be confused with a mark used earlier by another party, and the applicant was aware of that use when filing the application, and had not used the mark before the other party

The applicant has thus acted deceitfully, knowing that the trademark was already in use.

The mark is liable to be confused with the registered name of a plant variety

The mark cannot be registered if the mark is the same as or a clear imitation of the name of a plant variety protected in Finland or the EU, and the genus of the goods or services covered by the trademark application is the same as or closely related to the genus of the plant variety.

In Finland, plant variety publications are maintained by the Finnish Food Authority EVIRA. Go to the EVIRA website to read plant variety publications.

The mark is liable to be confused with a designation of origin or a geographical indication protected in Finland or the European Union

The mark cannot be registered if it is the same as or a clear imitation of a designation of origin, a geographical indication, a traditional term for wines or the name of a traditional speciality guaranteed that is protected in Finland or the European Union.

Read more about EU quality schemes for agricultural products. The website also has links to EU databases of all protected products.

You will also find information on name protection on the website of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of Finland.

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Latest update 20.04.2020