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  • Letters of consent in trademark examination in Vietnam

    Refusal to protect a trademark on the grounds that the applied-for mark is identical or confusingly similar to a prior registered mark (cited mark). To overcome the refusal, the applicant usually provides a letter of Consent from the cited trademark owner, which contains the following contents: (i) to authorize the applicant to use and use and register the applied-for mark and (ii) to commit no disputes arising.

    In the past, letters of consent are frequently entitled to great weight in its likelihood of confusion analysis in Vietnam. If an applied-for mark is not identical to a cited mark, most of cases will be successful. However, the registry changed their practice in the beginning of 2020 and a letter of consent no longer holds great weight. Different assigned examiners may have different opinions on the same similarity test supported by a letter of consent an assigned examiner may not solicit a letter of consent.

    The Vietnam intellectual property law does not provide any provisions in relation to letters of consent. In fact, in many cases letters of consent are accepted as a basis for overcoming the refusal. However, letters of consent are still controversy.

    In order to perfect the legal provisions regarding letters of consent in establishing trademark rights in Vietnam, the Intellectual Property Office is conducting polls on this topic in each the local IP agent.

    INVENCO will deliver any trends in changing the practice to the clients once it is available.

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