Main condition for protection

For the Icelandic Patent Office to register a trademark, the mark must fulfill certain conditions.

  • The trademark must be suitable for differentiating between the proprietor's goods or services and the goods or services of others.
  • The mark must be sufficiently distinctive.
  • The trademark may not be too similar to a registered trademark or name of a company owned by another party.
  • The trademark may not be a description of a type of goods, their condition, quantity, use, price, origin or other such information. The same shall apply to signs or word combinations that are common in trade or used in everyday speech.
  • The mark may not contain official symbols such as state flags or emblems, except as specifically permitted.
  • Trademarks may not violate the copyrights of other parties.
  • Marks that contain words that cannot be registered such as "Iceland" or "quality service" may, however, be registered in particular versions or with an image that is sufficiently distinctive. The proprietary right is then granted to the overall image of the trademark and not to the words as such.

Trademark applications filed with the Icelandic Patent Office are examined with all the above conditions in mind. Likewise, applications are subjected to the scrutiny of a committee of specially trained employees and attorneys employed by the Office.