Answer ... The statutes governing trademark rights in Nigeria are:
- the Nigerian Trade Marks Act (TMA) Cap T13 (Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (LFN) 2004);
- the Merchandise Marks Act Cap M10 LFN 2004; and
the Nigerian Trade Mark Regulations 1967.
Answer ... Trademark rights may arise both through use and through registration. The owner of an unregistered trademark can acquire goodwill or brand reputation through the use of a distinctive mark. However, unless a trademark is registered in Nigeria, the owner shall not be entitled to institute any proceedings to prevent, or to recover damages for, infringement. A trademark must be registered in respect of particular goods or classes of goods. Upon registration of a mark, the owner is given the exclusive right to use that trademark in relation to those goods.
Answer ... Trademarks are registered at the Nigerian Trade Marks Registry. The registry is bound by the statutory laws listed in question 1.1.