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Abbildung Markenurkunde

Trademarks

Trademarks serve to brand goods or services. Their primary function is to distinguish one provider’s goods or services from those of other competitors. The holder of a registered trademark can demand that any third party that uses the same trademark or a similar trademark for the same or similar goods or services cease and desist and pay damages.

A word, an image, or a combination of one or more words and images can be protected as a trademark. Trademark protection is also available for three-dimensional shapes, audio sequences, or even a specific scent.

When filing a trademark application, it is always necessary to state for which goods and/or services the trademark is supposed to be protected. Trademark protection is not, however, available for marks that are purely descriptive of those goods and/or services for which the trademark was registered.

Depending on where you wish to have trademark protection, you have various options:

  • German trademark,
  • European Union trademark,
  • Internationally registered trademark, and/or
  • National trademark in a country other than Germany, either in Europe or elsewhere.


The formal and subject-specific prerequisites for registering a trademark are examined by the competent authority. If the trademark is approved for registration, the initial period of protection is ten years from the date of registration. However, it is possible to extend the term of protection for another ten years as often as the trademark holder wishes.

We offer a range of services in connection with trademarks. For information, please see the following page: Services in trademark law.