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A trademark is extinguished for renewal or for forfeiture (due to external factors or non-compliance with legal provisions) or for total waiver (by explicit expression of the owner's will). The verdict of forfeiture/invalidity is reported in the Trademark bulletin.


There are essentially three cases of forfeiture provided by law:
1) for genericisation, when a trademark loses its distinctive character and becomes generic, or when a trademark no longer identifies a certain product coming from a certain manufacturer but simply identifies a product regardless of its source of origin (for example, this is what happened for some trademarks such as nylon, cellophane, the ballpoint pen).
2) for supervening unlawfulness (if it were unlawful since its registration, the trademark would be void)
3) for non-use for 5 consecutive years. It should be specified that the use must be effective: therefore, the merely symbolic or sporadic use or for insignificant quantities of products entails forfeiture; also, the trademark must be used in compliance with the registration (that is, for the relative class of products), as a different use would give rise to a made trademark, but would void the registered trademark. Exceptions are the so-called defensive trademark, or trademarks similar to those effectively used by the owner who registers it, not to be used, but only to strengthen the protection of the trademark, preventing others from registering trademarks very similar to the main one: the defensive trademarks are not used by the owner and should, therefore, become void for non-use, but this does not happen as the same law establishes that forfeiture will not occur if the main trademark has been used.



The waiver in whole to the rights deriving from the registration of a trademark may only be requested by the owner of a registered trademark (or by its agent/representative/delegate), by submitting a specific annotation request for total waiver.

If part of the trademark has been sold (partial transfer), waiver by each of the co-owners is required.

If the trademark has been licensed, the written authorisation by each licensee is required.


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