Use of trademarks in Iraq is not compulsory for filing applications for registration, or for maintaining trademark registrations in force. However, a trademark registration is vulnerable to cancellation on the basis of a court decision obtained to this effect by any interested party. A cancellation action relies basically on establishing sufficient grounds that the trademark in question has not actually been used seriously for a period of two consecutive years. A trademark registration is consequently canceled unless the owner proves that non-use of the trademark was for reasonable causes of which the court approves. the non-use period of the trademark is three years instead of two.
A trademark registration is valid for 15 years as of the filing date of the application, renewable for similar periods. The trademark law in Iraq does not provide for a grace period during which a late renewal application can be filed. However, the Trademark Office may grant, upon request, a grace period of one month so that a trademark renewal may be effective. Alternatively, the trademark will be re-filed with a validity extending for 15 years as of the expiry date of the registration. Starting from April 2004 the protection of the trademark becomes 10 years as from the filing date of the application and it can be renewed for the same periods. The grace period is available, and it is six months as from the expiration date of the application.
The classes of goods are subdivided. The wording of the goods to be included in the application should be in conformity with the local classification, which is almost identical to the International Classification of Goods and Services for the Purposes of the Registration of Marks under the Nice Agreement. An application can include goods in any number of classes, but with additional charges for each additional class. The applications can include goods in number of classes but with additional charges for each additional subclass not class.
The assignment of a trademark registration should be recorded. Unless it is published in the Official Gazette and entered in the records of the Trademark Office, an assignment shall not be effective opposite third parties. The assignment of a trademark registration must be with the goodwill of the business concern, unless otherwise agreed upon. Changes in the name and/or address of a registrant must be recorded. It is possible to file the recordal of assignment for pending publication not only for the published trademark.