Trademark registration in New Zealand

Trademark registration New Zealand - In New Zealand the current trade mark legislation in New Zealand is the Trade Marks Act 2002.The principles of “common law” apply. Trademark protection is obtained by registration. It can also be acquired by sufficient public recognition. Enforcing a non-registered trademark is costly and can be difficult, formal registration is encouraged.

Trademark registration: Requirements

A trademark application has to be filed before the New Zealand Government Agency. A legal address for service located in New Zealand must be advised to the New Zealand Government Agency at the time of filing an application. Foreign applicants do not need a domestic registration.

Trademark registration: Procedure

The application process includes a formal examination, an examination of distinctiveness and a search for prior trademarks. It takes approximately 2-4 weeks before an office action is issued by the New Zealand Government Agency for trademarks, however a minimum of 6 months applies from filing to full registration. After examination, assuming the trademark is approved, the acceptance of the trademark is published in the monthly “Official Journal of Trademarks” to allow third parties the opportunity to oppose if they believe the trademark registration would adversely affect them. The opposition period is 3 months after publication in the “Official Journal of Trade Marks".

Trademark registration: Duration

A trademark registration in New Zealand is valid for 10 years and starts with registration date. The registration is renewable for periods of 10 years.

Trademark registration: Methods

NATIONAL REGISTRATION: New Zealand is not currently member to the Madrid Agreement or Protocol. Accordingly National Registration is the only method for securing trademark registration.


Duly note, a trademark may be vulnerable to revocation (through application of a third party) if up to the date 1 month before the date of the application for the revocation of the registration of the trade mark, a continuous period of 3 years or more elapsed following the actual date of registration during which the trade mark was not put to genuine use in the course of trade in New Zealand, by any owner for the time being, in relation to the goods or services in respect of which it is registered. 

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