Trademark opposition proceedings: Comparing Thailand and the US

A trademark opposition proceeding is a specialised legal process in which one party challenges another party's pending trademark application. Such proceedings can be useful tools for third parties to protect their trademark rights and are often undertaken when a third party believes that a trademark filed by another party is confusingly similar to its own and will cause confusion to consumers. This article examines the differing approaches to trademark opposition proceedings in Thailand and the United States, and the benefits and drawbacks of each.

Thailand: In Thailand, after a trademark application is filed with the Department of Intellectual Property, it is reviewed by a Trademark Registrar. If the registrar approves the trademark for registration, the application is published in the Trademark Gazette. Third parties have 60 days after the publication date to oppose the trademark if they wish.

Opposition proceedings in Thailand are initiated with the Trademark Registrar. The opposing party files a petition setting out the reasons why the trademark should not be registered, and the owner of the trademark may submit a counterstatement in response within 60 days of receiving the petition. The registrar assigned to the case will consider the parties' submissions and will make a decision within 12 to 18 months.

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