Trademark Protection for Collective Mark

Collective trademarks are advantageous in that they assist in identifying the degree of quality as well as the geographical origin of products or services. Additionally, collective trademarks reflect the individual source of the goods or services.

What is the Meaning of Collective Mark?

A collective mark is a trademark that commonly is used by the members of a group, organization, or association. It is intended to indicate that the goods or services being offered are provided by members of the collective, and it serves as a symbol of their membership or affiliation. Collective marks are typically used for goods or services that are of a high quality and are subject to strict standards of production or distribution. They are different from certification marks, which are used to indicate that a product or service meets a specific standard or criteria.

The collective trademark may be used by a wide range of merchants, provided that each merchant is a member of the organisation that owns the trademark.

The definition of "collective trademark" may be found in section—2 (1)(g) of the Trade Marks Act, which was passed in 1999.

It states that it is a trademark that distinguishes the products or services of members of an association of individuals (not being a partnership within the definition of the Indian Partnership Act,1932), which is the owner of the marks, from those of other companies or organisations.

Advantages of Collective Trademark

Advantages of using a collective trademark include the following −

  • Educating consumers about the unique product characteristics for which a collective trademark is used.

  • They promote items that have a geographical origin; as a result, the product not only receives recognition in its own country, but it also receives recognition in other countries.

  • It assists in distinguishing one product from another, which is another benefit.

Types of Collective Trademark

There are two types of collective trademarks −

  • The mark actually used by the members, and

  • A trademark that is used by members of a cooperative or group that have been officially registered.

The following are the basic requirements −

  • The name of the group of people who are associated with one another and the locations of their separate offices;

  • The thing that the relationship is meant to represent;

  • The particulars of the participant;

  • The requirements for membership as well as the relationship of each individual member to the organisation;

  • The restrictions that govern the use of the mark, including any penalty that may be imposed;

  • The process for addressing objections to the use of collective marks;

  • The individuals who have been granted permission to use the mark; and

  • The prerequisites for joining the organization's membership requirements.


The following provisions are to be included in the rules governing collective trademarks −

  • Registration of collective trademarks is covered in sections 61–68 of the act.

  • According to Section 62's requirements, the collective mark must not include any words or connotations that might be seen as being deceptive.

  • The registration of a collective mark is prohibited if it is likely to mislead or confuse members of the public;

  • If it is likely to be taken to be something other than a collective mark, and the registrar may require that the mark in respect of which the application is made for registration include some indication that it is a collective mark. If it is likely to be taken to be a mark that is not a collective mark.

  • According to the provisions of Section 64, the Registrar is required to accept the Application for Registration together with the Regulations if the Registrar Meets the Requirements for Registration. It is possible that the acceptance will be contingent on certain terms, or it may be unconditional. Aside from that, the terms and conditions might contain adjustments to the aforementioned regulations, if there are any, as he may judge fit or deny it, and he is required to inform the rules if approved.

  • In addition, section 65 mandates that the rules must be available for public view in the same manner as section 148 mandates that the registrar's records must be.

  • The reasons that may lead to the cancellation of a collective mark registration are outlined in Section 68.

  • The manner in which the collective mark has been employed has led to it being seen by the public in an incorrect light as a collective mark, or

  • The reasons for not using the trademark, as outlined in section 47.

  • In accordance with section 36, a saving for terms that are used in the naming or describing of an item.

  • According to the provisions of Section 67, when a suit for infringement is brought by the registered proprietor of a collective mark as the plaintiff, the court must consider any loss suffered or likely to be suffered by authorised users and may give such directions as it deems fit as to the extent to which the plaintiff shall hold the proceeds of any monetary remedy of such authorised users. In addition, the court must take into account any loss suffered or likely to be suffered by authorised users.

Likewise, collective trademarks are a useful tool for advertising the products of a certain region that are distinctive to that region. The marketing of these kinds of items and the collaboration amongst the local producers can both benefit from the use of a collective mark. Collective trademarks are formed when products of a certain geographic origin have a distinctive historical, cultural, or social relationship with that location. This might be in the form of a connection to the region's past, present, or future.

Besides, a collective trademark is an embodiment of all of the distinctive qualities that are associated with goods or services that come from a certain origin. These characteristics are utilised in marketing the items, which in turn benefits the producers. The creation of a collective mark, as well as the costs associated with selling and advertising it, can be reduced via the use of a cost-saving mechanism known as a collective mark. As a result, a collective mark bestows an original identity and recognition upon the products and services that are owned by members of the organisation, elevating their level of notoriety and enhancing their commercial viability.


Collective marks are a type of trademark that may be used to products or services that are held by members of an association. In addition, the mark gives the members of the association a sense of identity in regard to the level of quality, geographical origin, and other characteristics that have been established by the group. It is the purpose of a trademark to identify the origin of a specific mark, which is to say that it makes it possible to recognise the unique source of products or services. On the other hand, in contrast to this, a collective mark might be utilised by a diverse collection of merchants who are members of the association that is the legal owner of the collective trademark rather than by just one single person.


Q1. What measures can be taken if you are accused of infringement or your trademark is imitated?

Ans. If you come across a trademark or a trade name that may be mistaken with your mark, you are required to take action in a legal capacity. In the event that you are accused of infringing upon someone else's trademark, you should get in touch with an attorney who specialises in trademark law as soon as possible.

Q2. How does a collective trademark differ from other Marks?

Ans. A collective membership mark doesn't make products and services stand out like other conventional trademarks. Members of an organisation only use a collective membership mark to show that they are members of that organisation.

Q3. In which section cancellation of collective trademark provisions are outlined?

Ans. Section 68 contains the provisions which are related to cancellation of collective trademarks.

Updated on: 14-Feb-2023


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