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Sec 9, Trade Marks Act 1999: Absolute grounds for refusal of registration

Section 9 (Absolute grounds for refusal of registration) under Chapter II (The Register and Conditions for Registration) of Trade Marks Act 1999 ⦂‒

❝(1) The trade marks—

  (a) which are devoid of any distinctive character, that is to say, not capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one person from those of another person;
  (b) which consist exclusively of marks or indications which may serve in trade to designate the kind, quality, quantity, intended purpose, values, geographical origin or the time of production of the goods or rendering of the service or other characteristics of the goods or service;
  (c) which consist exclusively of marks or indications which have become customary in the current language or in the bona fide and established practices of the trade,

shall not be registered:

Provided that a trade mark shall not be refused registration if before the date of application for registration it has acquired a distinctive character as a result of the use made of it or is a well-known trade mark.

(2) A mark shall not be registered as a trade mark if—
(a) it is of such nature as to deceive the public or cause confusion;
(b) it contains or comprises of any matter likely to hurt the religious susceptibilities of any class or section of the citizens of India;
(c) it comprises or contains scandalous or obscene matter;
(d) its use is prohibited under the Emblems and Names (Prevention of Improper Use) Act, 1950 (12 of 1950).

(3) A mark shall not be registered as a trade mark if it consists exclusively of—
(a) the shape of goods which results from the nature of the goods themselves; or
(b) the shape of goods which is necessary to obtain a technical result; or
(c) the shape which gives substantial value to the goods.

Explanation.—For the purposes of this section, the nature of goods or services in relation to which the trade mark is used or proposed to be used shall not be a ground for refusal of registration.❞

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