Trade Marks Act, 1996
Absolute grounds for refusal of registration.
8.—(1) The following shall not be registered as trade marks:
(a) signs which do not satisfy the requirements of section 6 (1);
(b) trade marks which are devoid of any distinctive character;
(c) trade marks which consist exclusively of signs or indications which may serve, in trade, to designate the kind, quality, quantity, intended purpose, value, geographical origin, the time of production of goods or of rendering of services, or other characteristics of goods or services;
(d) trade marks which consist exclusively of signs or indications which have become customary in the current language or in the bona fide and established practices of the trade:
Provided that, a trade mark shall not be refused registration by virtue of paragraph (b), (c) or (d) if, before the date of application for registration, it has in fact acquired a distinctive character as a result of the use made of it.
(2) A sign shall not be registered as a trade mark if it consists exclusively of—
(a) the shape which results from the nature of the goods themselves; or
(b) the shape of goods which is necessary to obtain a technical result; or
(c) the shape which gives substantial value to the goods.
(3) A trade mark shall not be registered if—
(a) it is contrary to public policy or to accepted principles of morality; or
(b) it is of such a nature as to deceive the public, for instance as to the nature, quality or geographical origin of the goods or service.
(4) A trade mark shall not be registered if or to the extent that—
(a) its use is prohibited in the State by any enactment or rule of law or by any provision of Community law; or
(b) the application for registration is made in bad faith by the applicant.