Shape Trademark in India

In India, a trademark can be used to differentiate a product’s shape, packaging, or any other three-dimensional object that can be represented visually. It is commonly known that Nestle and Cadbury are at odds over form trademarks. Nestle had defeated Cadbury’s effort to patent the shape of the four-fingered chocolate bar, while Cadbury had beaten Nestle’s attempt to protect the purple colour used in its packaging. We’ll examine form trademarks in India in this essay.

Shape Trademark in India

Requirement for Shape Trademark Registration

Any unique product or package design, as well as any three-dimensional object that may be represented graphically, are eligible for trademark registration. The nature of the goods determines the product’s shape;

  • the form of the components necessary to get a technical output;
  • The shape of things, adds significant value to them.

Shape Resulting from the Nature of Goods

Any shape that is a consequence of the nature of the thing cannot be claimed as a trademark. This section’s goal is to avoid the public from using any fundamental product kind exclusively.

Shape Required to Achieve a Technical Result

A trademark cannot be used for any shape of good necessary to fulfil a technological goal. As a result, any form based only on the shape of a product and attributable to the technological results is ineligible for trademark protection.

For example, Lego had a trademark for a three-dimensional image of a red Lego block. Mega Brands sued Lego for trademark infringement, claiming that the block’s form was essential to reach a technical conclusion. According to Mega Brands, the upper side of the block must contain two rows of studs in order for it to fit with regular Lego bricks. Mega Brands won in the European Courts, which led to the conclusion that Lego’s trademark was unlawful.

Shape Trademark in India

Shape Giving Substantial Value to the Goods

Shapes that provide significant value to items are not protected by trademarks since “aesthetic shapes” are not eligible for registration. Therefore, a trademark cannot be registered for any design that is more aesthetically attractive than the standard shape of a product. The criteria for assessing the important value of the items must take into consideration what drives customers to choose a certain shape over rival forms, disregarding any value ascribed to superior materials utilised or any technological or functional characteristic.