• Canadian Intellectual Property Office Signs on to TMClass
  • September 12, 2014 | Author: Steven Kennedy
  • Law Firm: Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP - Toronto Office
  • On August 25, 2014, Canadian trademark practice took a step toward international harmonization when the Canadian Intellectual Property Office ("CIPO") joined the database of the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market ("OHIM"), TMClass.

    TMClass is an international database consisting of descriptions of goods and services that have been approved by a variety of national trademark offices, including the United States, Benelux, the United Kingdom, and Japan. The descriptions used are also compliant with the Nice Classification System, which Canada is currently poised to adopt in the near future as a result of recent amendments to the Trademarks Act (see our discussion on the recent changes to Canada's trademark laws for further information).

    By using TMClass, trademark applicants can identify descriptions of goods and services that have been essentially "pre-approved" by the Canadian Intellectual Property Office, thus reducing the chances of receiving an Examiner's objection. Previously, CIPO published its own database of approved goods and services, although the library was limited compared to the database published by OHIM.

    As a result of this development, trademark applicants will have a more complete tool to allow them to draft applications in a way to reduce the likelihood of receiving an examiner's objection to an applied-for description of goods and services.