Chile’s open economy has driven diverse foreign investment from different parts of the world. As commercial innovations become key assets in creative industries, it is natural that businesses should seek to register a trademark in Chile to secure their revenue and brand ubiquity.
A registered trademark in Chile will legally protect your brand and give you exclusive rights to your invention for a period of 10 years, which can be extended successively for the same period of time.
Where to register a trademark in Chile?
The National Institute of Industrial Property (Instituto Nacional de Propiedad Industrial, INAPI) is in charge of the administration of industrial property in Chile. You’ll need to submit your completed application to register your trademark in Chile to this authority.
The law that governs trademark protection and registration in Chile is the industrial property Law N. 19039.
Categories of trademarks in Chile
Before filing a request to register a trademark in Chile, you must clearly define the nature of the brand or item you want to register. A sign can be composed of numbers, figures, letters, images, or a mixture of these.
The nature of signs is as follow:
- Word mark: (marca denominativa) is a word or an agrupation of words, letters or combinations of these or numbers.
- Figurative mark: A label with figures, symbol or images.
- Mixed marks: A label with words, images, symbols, numbers, etc.
Types of brands in Chile can be classified among the following categories:
- Product brand: signs of graphic representation
- Service brand: these are typically a graphic representation, however, these brands indicate the business origin of a service
- Brand of industrial establishments: this protects the name of the company
- Brand of commercial establishments: this protects the activity being performed
- Propaganda phrase: expressions that accompany the trademark
- Sound mark: sounds that can distinguish a certain origin
- Collective brand: refers to a distinctive sign of graphic representation utilized to distinguish origin, material or fabrication method of an association
- Certification mark: a distinctive sign indicating that the product or service complies with a series of standards validated by a certification authority.
Conduct a trademark search in Chile
Before submitting your application make sure to conduct a trademark search in Chile’s national INAPIS data base and check whether your trademark is already registered or if there are similar-looking brands that you’d be competing with. This is an important step, because INAPI evaluates originality of trademarks and grants a period for opposition claims.
To guarantee the success of your request, first confirm you have a unique trademark from your trademark search in Chile.There are certain trademarks that are rejected, such as general trademarks. For instance, the sign “aceite de cannabis” (cannabis oil) was rejected through ‘Fallo N. 178275; because it was found to be generic in relation to oils destined for medical use, analgesics, antidepressants, among others.
Also, consider that from the moment an application is filed, the process can take up to 6 months.
How to register your trademark in Chile
To register a trademark in Chile, first, you will need to consider whether you’ll need a legal representative.
Natural persons don’t require a legal representative to register a trademark, however, legal, foreign and a group of natural people will need to appoint a legal representative.
There are two ways in which you can register your mark. You can do so through the internet or in person. For registration over the internet, note that applicants who don’t already have a “unique key”, first need to visit a relevant local branch to obtain it.
The required documentation is the same for an online or in-person request.
Generally, documents you’ll need to provide to register a trademark in Chile include:
- information regarding the mark characteristics and nature
- applicants’ information
- a signed power of attorney document, if required
- a pay order
- if your mark is a label, present 6 samples of your trademark design. The size must be a minimum size of 5x5cm and maximum size of 20x20cm.
Register a trademark in Chile online
You can save yourself time by applying for your trademark online. If you don’t have a unique key already, you will need to generate one. This key is used for a variety of online procedures and filings in Chile, so it is a handy tool.
To generate a unique key, applicants will need to visit Chile’s civil registry offices or any ‘ChileAtiende’ branch. At your selected office, present your identification and you will be given a code to generate your key.
To generate your unique key, visit the Clave Unica (‘Unique Key’) website, enter your code, and follow the instructions to create a unique password, which will be your unique key.
Once you have your unique key, you will be able to access INAPI’s online platform to submit your Chile trademark application. At the application page, select ‘new request’ fill in the associated form which will ask for your information and your trademark description, attach required files and submit the request.
To physically register your trademark in Chile, you’ll need to visit and submit your application at INAPI office. This office is located in:
Libertador Bernardo O’Higgins Avenue 194,
You’ll also need to fill and pay form 10 -- the associated fee- at an authorized bank and present this document at INAPI’s office to accredit your request.
To register a trademark in Chile, applicants need to pass INAPI’s evaluation. INAPI will review your application and notify you If there are errors or issues. The applicant may correct or submit further documentation within a period of 30 days if necessary.
After the application is accepted, applicants then need to publish an extract of this application in the official gazette within 20 working days. The purpose of this procedure is to give other trademarks owners who may consider their mark to be similar to yours the chance to file for an opposition claim.
If there are no opposition claims, INAPI will provide a final resolution that will approve or reject the trademark. If the resolution approves the trademark, the applicant must pay for and accredit the definitive rights within a 60 day period.
Once the accreditation payment is finished, you need to pay a final fee for registration purposes. Applicants have 60 more days to pay for the registry fee of the trademark.
If the request is rejected, the applicant may appeal this decision before the Industrial Property Tribunal.
The cost to file a request for a trademark is approximately US$66 and the cost for the registration of a trademark is US$132. In addition, the cost to file an appeal for rejection is US$132 as well.
Chile bases its prices according to their monthly tax unit (Unidad Tributaria Mensual, UTM), which can slightly change yearly according to the government.
Member of the World Intellectual Property Organization
Chile is a member country of the Word Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), through the Paris convention. This membership allows exporters or interested parties to more easily obtain and protect their trademarks internationally in the territories covered by this convention. Currently, there are 177 contracting parties registered under the Paris convention.
Register a trademark in Chile with Biz Latin Hub
Chile is a country with solid macroeconomic fundamentals and with an open economy for foreign investment. When expanding into the country, it’s important to protect your business ideas and inventions, and ensure they remain unique and profitable. To do this, you can register a trademark in Chile with the assistance of a professional lawyer.
At Biz Latin Hub, we have vast experience helping businesses register their trademarks in Chile. Our team of local lawyers is ready to assist you in all commercial legal processes.
Check our video about our legal services.