Turkey is a member of the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property. Being a member of the Nice Agreement, the International Classification of Goods and Services for the Purposes of the Registration of Marks (9th edition) is followed in Turkey, and the revision of class 42 with the creation of classes 43 to 45 has been adopted as of January 1, 2002. Multi-class applications are possible for both goods and services.
Once a trademark application is filed, it is examined as to its registrability. Upon examination, if the Trademark Registrar rejects the mark, an appeal maybe submitted within 2 months from the date of rejection. Once a trademark application is accepted by the Registrar, it is published in the Official Gazette.
Any interested party may file a notice of opposition to the registration of the mark within three months from the publication date. The Registrar's decision concerning the opposition may be appealed to the Committee “Re-Examination and Evaluation Board” and the Committee's decision to the competent court. In the absence of opposition, a trademark is registered and the relative certificate of registration is issued.
A trademark registration is valid for 10 years as of the date of filing the application renewable for similar periods. The renewal fees of a trademark registration can be paid during the last 6 months of the final year of the protection period. A grace period of 6 months is allowed for late renewal with a fine.
The ownership of a registered trademark can be assigned with the goodwill of the commercial enterprise. Unless an assignment has been recorded in the register and published in the Trademark Gazette, it shall have no effect vis-à-vis third parties. Changes in the name and/or address of the registrant must be recorded in order to protect rights. Registered user agreements, licenses and amendments which do not affect the identity of the mark substantially, limitation of the list of goods and/or services covered by a trademark registration can be recorded as well.
Use of trademarks is not compulsory for filing application neither for registration nor for maintaining the registration in force. However, any interested party may request the court to cancel a trademark registration, if the owner fails to use such a trademark in Turkey for 5 consecutive years from the date of registration.
Illegal use of a registered trademark by an unauthorized person, use of a forged or counterfeit trademark, application to one's goods a registered trademark belonging to another party in bad faith, dealing in products bearing a forged or counterfeit trademark, rendering services under a forged or counterfeit trademark, and use of a trademark that falls under certain categories of unpredictable marks are offenses punishable under the law in Turkey.