KNOWLEDGE BASE International Trademark In Germany

The information on this page was current at the time it was published. Regulations, trends, statistics, and other information are constantly changing. While we strive to update our Knowledge Base, we strongly suggest you use these pages as a general guide and be sure to verify any regulations, statistics, guidelines, or other information that are important to your efforts.


International Trademark In Germany


A trademark is a type of protected intellectual property and is considered an important intangible business asset. Acquiring a trademark can give your business partners and investors more confidence in your business, which can help you to collaborate with more partners and to raise equity to further develop your business. A trademark not only protects your creations, but can also maximize the value of your creation because you have the ability to license it out to a franchisee or sell it outright.  


What is a trademark?

A trademark is a sign or mark that you can use to identify and distinguish your company’s goods or services from another company’s goods or services. By registering your trademark, you can prevent others from using its name or logo. Once a trademark has been registered, it is protected indefinitely as long as you renew it every 10 years.


What law or regulations apply?

The German Patent and Trademark Office (DPMA) governs intellectual property, including trademark, protection in Germany. The Trade Mark Act (Markengesetz), the Trade Mark Ordinance (Markenverordnung), the DPMA Ordinance (DPMA-Verordnung—only Available in German), the Patent Costs Act (Patentkostengesetz), the Ordinance Concerning the Administrative Costs at the DPMA (DPMA-Verwaltungskostenverordnung—only available in German), the Patent Costs Payment Ordinance (Patentkostenzahlungsverordnung), and the Ordinance on Electronic Legal Transactions with the German Patent and Trade Mark Office (Verordnung über den elektronischen Rechtsverkehr beim Deutschen Patent und Markenamt—only available in German) regulate trademarks and the application process in Germany.

Trademarks must be unique and can include:

  • words,

  • letters,

  • numbers,

  • pictures,

  • colors,

  • sounds, or

  • a combination of these.


If you do not reside in Germany, you must appoint an attorney in Germany or an attorney established in the EU to act on your (your company’s) behalf. Because every company has different needs and because the trademark process can be complex and lengthy, we recommend that you speak with an attorney about the scope of your rights.




You may use the ® symbol (“registered”) only if your trademark has been registered. You are not required to use this symbol. The ™ symbol (“trademark”) does not  have any legal meaning in Germany, as it has its roots Anglo-American jurisdictions.


What are the risks of noncompliance?

If you discover that your trademark has been used without your consent, you may exercise your rights under the Trade Mark Act. In an action for infringement of a registered trademark by the proprietor of the trademark, the court may grant the following types of relief:

  • an injunction;

  • monetary damages; and

  • an account of profits.

In certain circumstances, the court can also order the erasure, disposal, or delivery up of the infringing goods. Infringement may also rise to the level of criminal conduct, and be prosecuted as such, in certain circumstances.


Globig Resources

German Patent and Trademark Office

Trade Mark Act

Trade Mark Ordinance

DPMA Ordinance

Patent Costs Act

Ordinance on Electronic Legal Transactions with the German Patent and Trade Mark Office

DPMA Information for Trade Mark Applicants


Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market

World Intellectual Property Organization

eSearch plus for Community trademark

ROMARIN for international registrations

TMview the OHIM's search engine for trademarks and trademark applications of all participating trade mark offices

Global Brand Database the WIPO's search engine for trademarks and trademark applications from national and international sources

Nice Classification (NCL)


Guide to Trade Mark Searches Online

Trademark Fees

Trademark Forms

Madrid Protocol


KNOWLEDGE BASE International Trademark In Germany