Russia is a member of both the Madrid Protocol and the Madrid Agreement. To establish rights to a trademark in Russia, registration of the mark is mandatory. The trademark registration system in Russia, follows the “First to file” jurisdiction. In the “First to file” jurisdiction, the first applicant who files a trademark application in Russia will get the trademark registration.
In the Russian jurisdiction, an application to register a trademark can be filed by either the application themselves, or by a trademark attorney. However, the applicant can only file the trademark application themselves if they are a citizen of, or are living in Russia. In the case the that the applicant is not living in Russia, a local address for service is required to be provided. With regards to the trademark attorney, they need to be a citizen of, or be domiciled in Russia as well. Furthermore, to complete the trademark application, a power of attorney (POA) is needed.
A pre-filing search of the trademark is not mandatory in Russia, however it is recommended.
Once the Trademark application is filed with the Trademark authority in Russia, they will conduct an official trademark search. In Russia the trademark search takes approximately one month (30 days). After the trademark has been officially searched by the authority, the trademark application process starts. In Russia, the entire trademark application process from filing an application to trademark registration is about 10 to 12 months. This time period is for a normal and smooth prosecution, meaning without any oppositions.
The trademark application process in Russia begins with the Trademark authority conducting a formal Examination of the trademark application filed. This formal examination entails that the trademark application is examined on conformity with the filing requirements and classification, and on whether the descriptions are comprehensible. Additionally, the application is also examined on descriptiveness, distinctiveness, deceptiveness, and on whether there is any conflict with any earlier filed application or registration.
After the examination of the trademark application, the trademark is registered. Following the registration of the trademark in Russia, certain elements of the trademark are published in the Official Gazette “Trademarks” (which is issued twice a month) and online. If after the publication of the trademark in the Official Gazette and online there are no oppositions, official trademark registration is granted to the applicant in Russia.
Once the official registration is granted to the applicant, the applicant has exclusive rights to their trademark in Russia. The duration of a trademark registration in Russia is 10 years, starting from the application date. In addition, a trademark is renewable for 10 years from the date on which the trademark application was filed. After the first 10 years, the trademark is renewable again for 10 years, but starting from the registration date.