How to register a trademark in Guatemala

Find out how to register your trademark in Guatemala and protect your business’ unique signs. Plus understand the importance of conducting a thorough trademark search in Guatemala in order to ensure your distinctive signs are unique.

When undertaking commercial or corporate activities in Latin America, consider obtaining exclusive rights to your intellectual property assets. This includes elements such as your product and service brands, distinctive signs (slogans and/or trade names).

For business owners and executives in Guatemala, local legislation provides support to protect their intellectual assets and ensure that they profit from their innovations. In 2019, Guatemalan authorities approved over 10,000 trademark applications.

Join this group of countries and secure your business by registering a trademark in Guatemala.

A graph showing foreign investment in Guatemala
Guatemala is a country with great opportunities for doing business. Register a trademark in Guatemala

Steps to register a trademark in Guatemala

There are 6 general steps to register a trademark in Guatemala for your unique sign. This includes conducting a thorough trademark search in Guatemala’s database to ensure your designs are unique.

The public institution in charge of administering the trademark registration process in Guatemala is the Guatemalan Intellectual Property Registry (Registro de Propiedad Intelectual – RPI).

1. Engage with a local trademark specialist

Please note that the trademark registration in Guatemala requires the advice of an active Guatemalan Lawyer and Notary. This person is responsible for signing, stamping and stamping the trademark registration form.

Connect with a local trademark law specialist who can assist you with your trademark application process. You’ll want to find a trusted partner who can bridge bureaucratic and cultural gaps between your company and local institutions. This may mean seeking a partner with bilingual capabilities.

2. Conduct a trademark search in Guatemala

As with other Latin American jurisdictions, the first step in a trademark registration process is to complete a preliminary trademark search in Guatemala.

The trademark search is necessary as companies must first confirm that the sign(s) they want to trademark are not already registered as such to another party.

In Guatemala, the trademark search can be completed online on the web platform of the Intellectual Property Registry (RPI). Your legal partner can assist with this process.

Infographic: How to register a trademark in Guatemala
How to register a trademark in Guatemala

3. Complete and submit your trademark application

Once you have verified that there is no identical or similar brand to the one you want to register, you can then complete and submit your application to the RPI. When completing this application, you must outline the appropriate Nice Classification for your trademark.

4. Application evaluation

Once the application and supporting documentation have been submitted, the application goes through a thorough examination process with the RPI. This agency will evaluate and confirm your application abides by Guatemalan trademark criteria.  

5. Publication of trademark application

If the trademark registration application passes the evaluation process, the RPI draws up an edict (publication) outlining the details of your pending trademark registration in Guatemala. This edict, once notified to the applicant, must be published in the country’s Official Gazette

This edict will be publicly available for 2 months, in order to allow time for third parties to respond to your proposed trademark. In the case that a third party objects to your trademark registration in Guatemala, the RPI will re-evaluate your application.

6. Application approval

After 2 months of the publication of the edict, if the RPI has not received any objections to your proposed trademark registration in Guatemala, it will approve the application. At this point, a payment order is generated.

What are the benefits of registering a trademark in Guatemala?

By registering a distinctive sign as a trademark in Guatemala, you obtain exclusive rights to the item or the characteristic of the registered sign and mitigate the risks of piracy. This includes:

  • Protection of your sign registered in Guatemalan territory
  • Right to file civil, criminal and administrative legal actions against those who violate their property rights for their commercial benefit.
  • To be able to restrict the import of goods that use registered trademarks that infringe theirs
  • Right to license third parties and collect royalties
  • Right to offer a franchise of your product or service
  • Transfer the rights of your brand to third parties
  • Possibility of guaranteeing a credit with your brand.

Your trademark in Guatemala becomes an intangible asset, which in many cases is the most valuable asset of your company.

Intellectual property rights in Guatemala

In Guatemalan law, a brand is understood as “any denominative, figurative, mixed, three-dimensional, olfactory, sound or mixed sign that is capable of distinguishing products or services from other similar ones on the market, from an individual or legal person, of those of another and that can be object of a graphic representation.” For the purpose of trademark registration, your application must distinguish the types and classes of trademarks you want to protect.

Based on the foregoing, if you are about to start corporate activities in Guatemala or if you have already established a company in this country, it is important that you understand and comply with all above processes to ensure efficiency and reduce delay in protecting the property rights of your brand(s).

Contact us for help with your trademark search and registration in Guatemala

If you are interested in registering a trademark in Guatemala and need assistance to comply with the processes derived from these activities, we can help. At Biz Latin Hub, our customized market entry and back-office solutions provide expert legal and commercial advice for the registration of trademarks. This includes conducting a thorough trademark search in Guatemala.

Contact our expert team on trademarks and data protection here at Biz Latin Hub. We will provide you the support necessary to guarantee the long-term success of your business in Guatemala. 

Learn more about our team and expert authors.

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Key services offered by Biz Latin Hub. Register a trademark in Guatemala

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