Under Turkish trademark law, a well-known trademark enjoys
enhanced protection. Well-known trademarks are protected not only
for goods and services that are registered, but for different goods
and services as well. In fact, none of the trademark regulations
identify what exactly a well-known trademark is or what the
requirements are. Turkish case law, however, adopts TRIPS and Paris
Convention criteria to identify a well-known trademark. The
trademark owner is responsible for proving a trademark's
well-known character, and must submit sufficient evidence. In
practice, it is quite challenging for trademark owners to prove the
well-known character of a trademark in terms of collecting of
evidence, effort and expense.
The Turkish Patent Institute (the
"TPI") has a special registry for
registering a well-known trademark. Registration with the TPI's
Well-Known Trademark Registry is permanent and not subject to a
renewal process. The trademark owner can apply to the TPI
free-of-charge by submitting documents evidencing that the
trademark fulfills the well-known trademark criteria under Turkish
trademark law, which are similar to the WIPO Joint Recommendation
on Protection of Well-Known Marks' criteria.
To register a trademark with the Well-Known Trademark Registry,
the owner must provide:
international trademark registration certificates showing the
extent of the trademark use in different geographical areas;
documents showing the duration of the trademark use and the
trademark's historical background;
consumer surveys and opinion polls, if available;
documents, reports or surveys showing the trademark value;
previous court or administrative authority decisions
acknowledging the well-known character of the trademark;
advertisement, promotion materials and sponsorships in
Turkey—brochures, catalogues, copies of television, radio and
printed advertisement of the goods and services performed under the
the average visitor number to the website on which the
trademark is used, if available;
documents showing the historical background, size, employees,
capital, interest, branches, offices and licensors of the applicant
company that owns the trademark;
rewards granted to the trademark holder by independent
authorities for the goods and/or services performed under
articles on the trademark in the press or in specialized
documents demonstrating the market share enjoyed by the
products sold under the trademark, including the sales volume and
the turnover attributable to the products' sales.
The Well-Known Trademarks Registry facilitates determination of
a trademark's well-known status. Even if the well-known
trademark registration is not indisputable in a future court or TPI
claim, it is still substantial evidence of a trademark's
reputation, and it significantly reduces the burden of proving the
well-known status of a trademark.
About Baker & McKenzie's IP Practice
Our Intellectual Property practice group provides the full
range of IP services, specializing in international trademark
portfolio management and IP litigation including patent, trademark,
and unfair competition litigation. With a team
of trademark and patent qualified attorneys, we
are known for our work on both contentious and
non-contentious IP issues.
"Since it set up shop in 2011, Baker & McKenzie's
Turkish office Esin Attorney partnership has leveraged on its
position as a component of the world's largest law firm to
build a solid trademark group. Its metier is managing international
trademark portfolios and it excels in all aspects of prosecution.
It also has a spotless track record in enforcement actions. Mine
Guner is a useful point of contact." World Trademark Review
WTR 1000 rankings, Turkey 2014
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