What can you register?

What is a trademark? A trademark is used to distinguish your goods and/or services from those of other businesses. A trademark can consist of words, names, logos, figures, images, letters, numbers, packaging, sounds or a combination of these.

Different types of trademarks

A trademark must be distinctive

A trademark can only be registered if it can be used to differentiate your goods or services from those of others. It should be distinctive and express something more than the characteristics or qualities of the goods or services you intend to use it for - we call it "distinctiveness."

The trademark should ensure that consumers recognise it as offering a particular product or service. The trademark serves as a guarantee that the goods and services come from a specific manufacturer or supplier. The customer should be able to recognise the product and get the quality they expect.

Examples:

  • We will not necessarily be able to register a slogan such as WE KEEP OUR PROMISES. Everyone must be allowed to make the same statement concerning their goods or services.
    However, we can register it if you combine it with a more distinctive word, for example STAUREA - WE KEEP OUR PROMISES
     
  • You can not get exclusive rights to ØKERN AUTO REPAIRS for services that involve "repairing cars" since the trademark only describes where in Oslo the service is offered, namely Økern, and what type of services are offered there.
    However, if you combine it with a figure or image (e.g. an eagle) you can register it as a combined mark.

Combined mark with descriptive text: If we register your combined mark with a descriptive text, it is very important to be aware that you do not have exclusive rights to the descriptive text in the trademark, but to the trademark as a whole. This means that others are free to use the same text when marketing their goods or services, or register it as a trademark along with other distinctive elements.

Even if your trademark is not sufficiently distinctive, you may still be able to register it if you can document extensive use of the trademark in Norway for identifying your goods or services.

Confusing trademarks

When the Norwegian Industrial Property Office processes a trademark application, we make an assessment as to whether there are any older registered trademarks that may be an obstacle to the registration of the trademark you have applied for. We determine whether potential purchasers of the goods or services in question may confuse these trademarks or come to believe that there is a connection between the trademark owners. 

Is the brand registered by others?

You can check to see if anyone else has registered a trademark similar to your. Use our Search Service.

If the trademark is already registered to someone else, it may still be possible to get it registered if:

  • you use the trademark for other types of goods and services
  • you get the consent of the holder of the registration. Read more about consent.
  • the registered trademark is a combined trademark, i.e. logo with descriptive text, in which case it is not certain that the holder has protection for the text itself. A combined mark contains both words and images (figurative elements) and this means that the holder does not necessarily have exclusive rights to the descriptive text in the mark, but to the mark as a whole. This means that others are free to use the same text in their marketing or register it as a trademark along with other distinctive elements.

Misleading trademarks

The NIPO can not register a misleading trademark. A trademark is misleading if a cross-section of potential buyers can get the wrong impression of the type of goods or services in question. This might be quality, function, quantity, price, purpose or country of origin.

Examples:

  • If the applicant is not a doctor, the trademark DR. HAUSMANN, applied for orthopedic shoes, is misleading for consumers. The consumer who is going to buy orthopedic shoes may be influenced to buy the product because they think it is made by a doctor.
  • A logo with the text MADE IN USA could be misleading if it says "clothing made in Vietnam" in the list of goods and services. Similarly, a trademark containing the text FRANCE would be misleading if it was applied for "cheese from Switzerland" because the text in the mark refers to a country other than that in the list of goods or services.

Apply for a trademark

Questions

If you have any questions, please call our Customer Service Centre at +47 22 38 73 00 or send us an e-mail: post@patentstyret.no

Thank you for your feedback! If you need an answer, call +47 22 38 73 00 and talk to our Customer Service Centre.
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