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The Madrid Protocol‚ which is also known as the Madrid System‚ is an international system that facilitates trademark registration. Under the Madrid System‚ a United States trademark owner may file an international trademark application with the International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization. This organization will grant the rights to an original mark in multiple jurisdictions around the world.

This system provides trademark protection in multiple countries‚ which makes it more effective than seeking protection in each individual country of interest. This allows an applicant to file one application in one jurisdiction and with one set of fees. It also allows registrants and trademark owners to make any necessary changes through one administrative office.

As of October 2010‚ there were 83 countries participating in the Madrid System.

Before registering a trademark under the Madrid System‚ an applicant must first obtain an existing registration with an existing member of the system. In other words‚ if you are a United States business owner planning to register under the system‚ you must first register your trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

If you are planning to register a trademark with the USPTO‚ you should first conduct a thorough search of trademarks that are already in existence. This can prevent you from a conflict with an existing trademark owner. To register a trademark with the USPTO, contact us at (800) 976-4904.

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By Charles Internicola November 18, 2010

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