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International Trademark Classification Changes

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) issues a final rule to incorporate classification changes adopted by the Nice Agreement Concerning the International Classification of Goods and Services for the Purposes of the Registration of Marks (Nice Agreement). These changes are effective January 1, 2016, and are listed in the International Classification of Goods and Services for the Purposes of the Registration of Marks (10th ed., ver. 2016), which is published by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). In addition, the USPTO is making a change that appeared in an earlier revision of the Nice Agreement and minor revisions to punctuation and grammar to conform to what appears in the Nice Agreement.

DATES:

This rule is effective on January 1, 2016.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Catherine Cain, Office of the Deputy Commissioner for Trademark Examination Policy, at (571) 272-8946 or TMFRNotices@uspto.gov.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Purpose: As noted above, the revised rule benefits the public by providing notice regarding classification changes adopted by the Nice Agreement that will become effective on January 1, 2016.

Summary of Major Provisions: The USPTO is revising § 6.1 in part 6 of title 37 of the Code of Federal Regulations to incorporate classification changes and modifications that will become effective January 1, 2016, or that appeared in earlier revisions of the Nice Agreement, as listed in the International Classification of Goods and Services for the Purposes of the Registration of Marks (10th ed., 2016) (Nice Classification), published by WIPO. In addition, the USPTO is making minor revisions to punctuation and grammar so that § 6.1 will conform to what appears in the Nice Agreement.

The Nice Agreement is a multilateral treaty, administered by WIPO, that establishes the international classification of goods and services for the purposes of registering trademarks and service marks. As of September 1, 1973, this international classification system is the controlling system used by the United States, and it applies to all applications filed on or after September 1, 1973, and their resulting registrations, for all statutory purposes. See 37 CFR 2.85(a). As of January 1, 2015, eighty-four states are parties to the Nice Agreement. Every signatory to the Nice Agreement must utilize the international classification system.

Each state party to the Nice Agreement is represented in the Committee of Experts of the Nice Union (Committee of Experts), which meets annually to vote on proposed changes to the Nice Classification. Any state that is a party to the Nice Agreement may submit proposals for consideration by the other members in accordance with agreed-upon rules of procedure. Proposals are currently submitted on an annual basis to an electronic forum on Start Printed Page 80267the WIPO Web site, commented upon, modified, and compiled by WIPO for further discussion and voting at the annual Committee of Experts meeting.

In 2013, the Committee of Experts began annual revisions to the Nice Classification. The annual revisions, which are published electronically and enter into force on January 1 each year, are referred to as versions and identified by edition number and year of the effective date (e.g., “Nice Classification, 10th edition, version 2013” or “NCL 10-2013”). Each annual version includes all changes adopted by the Committee of Experts since the adoption of the previous version. The changes consist of the addition of new goods and services to, and deletion of goods and services from, the Alphabetical List, and any modifications to the wording in the Alphabetical List, the class headings, and the explanatory notes that do not involve the transfer of goods or services from one class to another. New editions of the Nice Classification continue to be published electronically and include all changes adopted annually since the previous edition, as well as goods or services transferred from one class to another or new classes that are created.

The annual revisions contained in this final rule, which consist of modifications to the class headings, have been incorporated into the Nice Agreement by the Committee of Experts. As a signatory to the Nice Agreement, the United States adopts these revisions pursuant to Article 1.

Costs and Benefits: This rulemaking is not economically significant under Executive Order 12866 (Sept. 30, 1993).

Discussion of Rule Changes

The Office is revising § 6.1 as follows:

The wording “metals in foil and powder form for painters, decorators, printers and artists” in Class 2 is amended to “metals in foil and powder form for use in painting, decorating, printing and art.”

The wording “Pharmaceutical and veterinary preparations” in Class 5 is amended to “Pharmaceuticals, medical and veterinary preparations.”

The wording “goods of common metal not included in other classes” in Class 6 is deleted.

The comma after “apparatus and instruments” in Class 10 is changed to a semicolon.

The wording “and goods in precious metals or coated therewith, not included in other classes” in Class 14 is deleted.

The wording “Paper, cardboard and goods made from these materials, not included in other classes” in Class 16 is amended to “Paper and cardboard.” The wording “(not included in other classes)” is deleted from the phrase “plastic materials for packaging (not included in other classes).”

The wording “Rubber, gutta-percha, gum, asbestos, mica and goods made from these materials and not included in other classes” in Class 17 is amended to “Unprocessed and semi-processed rubber, gutta-percha, gum, asbestos, mica and substitutes for all these materials.”

The wording “and goods made of these materials and not included in other classes” is deleted from the phrase “Leather and imitations of leather, and goods made of these materials and not included in other classes” in Class 18.

The wording “goods (not included in other classes) of wood, cork, reed, cane, wicker, horn, bone, ivory, whalebone, shell, amber, mother-of-pearl, meerschaum and substitutes for all these materials, or of plastics” in Class 20 is amended to “unworked or semi-worked bone, horn, ivory, whalebone or mother-of-pearl; shells; meerschaum; yellow amber.”

The wording “not included in other classes” is deleted from the phrase “glassware, porcelain and earthenware not included in other classes” in Class 21.

The wording “Ropes, string, nets, tents, awnings, tarpaulins, sails, sacks and bags (not included in other classes);” in Class 22 is amended to “Ropes and string; nets; tents, awnings and tarpaulins; sails;” and the wording “paper, cardboard,” is added before the term “rubber” in the phrase “padding and stuffing materials (except of rubber or plastics).”

The wording “Textiles and textile goods, not included in other classes” is replaced with “Textiles and substitutes for textiles” in Class 24.

The wording “not included in other classes” is deleted from the phrase “gymnastic and sporting articles not included in other classes” in Class 28.

The term “pastry” is amended to “pastries” in Class 30. The term “edible” is inserted before the term “ices.”

The wording “Grains and agricultural, horticultural and forestry products not included in other classes” and “seeds” in Class 31 is amended to “Agricultural, horticultural and forestry products; raw and unprocessed grains and seeds.”

Rulemaking Requirements

Administrative Procedure Act: The changes in this rulemaking involve rules of agency practice and procedure, and/or interpretive rules. See Perez v. Mortg. Bankers Ass'n, 135 S. Ct. 1199, 1204 (2015) (interpretive rules “advise the public of the agency's construction of the statutes and rules which it administers”) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted); Nat'l Org. of Veterans' Advocates v. Sec'y of Veterans Affairs, 260 F.3d 1365, 1375 (Fed. Cir. 2001) (rule that clarifies interpretation of a statute is interpretive); Bachow Commc'ns Inc. v. FCC, 237 F.3d 683, 690 (D.C. Cir. 2001) (rules governing an application process are procedural under the Administrative Procedure Act); Inova Alexandria Hosp. v. Shalala, 244 F.3d 342, 350 (4th Cir. 2001) (rules for handling appeals were procedural where they did not change the substantive standard for reviewing claims).

Accordingly, prior notice and opportunity for public comment for the changes in this rulemaking are not required pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b) or (c), or any other law. See Perez, 135 S. Ct. at 1206 (notice-and-comment procedures are required neither when an agency “issue[s] an initial interpretive rule” nor “when it amends or repeals that interpretive rule”); Cooper Techs. Co. v. Dudas, 536 F.3d 1330, 1336-37 (Fed. Cir. 2008) (stating that 5 U.S.C. 553, and thus 35 U.S.C. 2(b)(2)(B), does not require notice and comment rulemaking for “interpretative rules, general statements of policy, or rules of agency organization, procedure, or practice,” quoting 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(A)). The 30-day delay in effectiveness is not applicable because this rule is not a substantive rule as the changes in this rule have no impact on the standard for reviewing trademark applications. As discussed above, the changes in this rulemaking involve rules of agency practice and procedure, and consist of modifications to the class headings that are used to classify goods and services in the trademark-application process. These changes are administrative in nature and will have no substantive impact on the evaluation of a trademark application. The purpose of a delay in effectiveness is to allow affected parties time to modify their behaviors, businesses, or practices to come into compliance with new regulations. This rule imposes no additional requirements on the affected entities. Therefore, the requirement for a 30-day delay in effectiveness is not applicable, and the rule is made effective upon the date of publication.

Regulatory Flexibility Act: As prior notice and an opportunity for public comment are not required pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 or any other law, neither a Regulatory Flexibility Act analysis, nor a certification under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601, et seq.), is required. See 5 U.S.C. 603.Start Printed Page 80268

Executive Order 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review): This rulemaking has been determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866 (Sept. 30, 1993).

Executive Order 13563 (Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review): The USPTO has complied with Executive Order 13563 (Jan. 18, 2011). Specifically, the USPTO has, to the extent feasible and applicable: (1) Made a reasoned determination that the benefits justify the costs of the rule changes; (2) tailored the rules to impose the least burden on society consistent with obtaining the regulatory objectives; (3) selected a regulatory approach that maximizes net benefits; (4) specified performance objectives; (5) identified and assessed available alternatives; (6) provided the public with a meaningful opportunity to participate in the regulatory process, including soliciting the views of those likely affected prior to issuing a notice of proposed rulemaking, and provided on-line access to the rulemaking docket; (7) attempted to promote coordination, simplification, and harmonization across government agencies and identified goals designed to promote innovation; (8) considered approaches that reduce burdens and maintain flexibility and freedom of choice for the public; and (9) ensured the objectivity of scientific and technological information and processes, to the extent applicable.

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism): This rulemaking does not contain policies with federalism implications sufficient to warrant preparation of a Federalism Assessment under Executive Order 13132 (Aug. 4, 1999).

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995: The changes set forth in this rulemaking do not involve a Federal intergovernmental mandate that will result in the expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, of 100 million dollars (as adjusted) or more in any one year, or a Federal private sector mandate that will result in the expenditure by the private sector of 100 million dollars (as adjusted) or more in any one year, and will not significantly or uniquely affect small governments. Therefore, no actions are necessary under the provisions of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995. See 2 U.S.C. 1501 et seq.

Paperwork Reduction Act: This final rule does not involve information collection requirements which are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 37 CFR Part 6

  • Administrative practice and procedure
  • Classification
  • Trademarks
End List of Subjects

For the reasons given in the preamble and under the authority contained in 15 U.S.C. 1112, 1123 and 35 U.S.C. 2, as amended, the USPTO is amending part 6 of title 37 as follows:

Start Part

PART 6—CLASSIFICATION OF GOODS AND SERVICES UNDER THE TRADEMARK ACT

End Part Start Amendment Part

1. The authority citation for part 6 continues to read as follows:

End Amendment Part Start Authority

Authority: Secs. 30, 41, 60 Stat. 436, 440; 15 U.S.C. 1112, 1123; 35 U.S.C. 2, unless otherwise noted.

End Authority Start Amendment Part

2. Revise § 6.1 to read as follows:

End Amendment Part
International schedule of classes of goods and services.

Goods

1. Chemicals used in industry, science and photography, as well as in agriculture, horticulture and forestry; unprocessed artificial resins, unprocessed plastics; manures; fire extinguishing compositions; tempering and soldering preparations; chemical substances for preserving foodstuffs; tanning substances; adhesives used in industry.

2. Paints, varnishes, lacquers; preservatives against rust and against deterioration of wood; colorants; mordants; raw natural resins; metals in foil and powder form for use in painting, decorating, printing and art.

3. Bleaching preparations and other substances for laundry use; cleaning, polishing, scouring and abrasive preparations; soaps; perfumery, essential oils, cosmetics, hair lotions; dentifrices.

4. Industrial oils and greases; lubricants; dust absorbing, wetting and binding compositions; fuels (including motor spirit) and illuminants; candles and wicks for lighting.

5. Pharmaceuticals, medical and veterinary preparations; sanitary preparations for medical purposes; dietetic food and substances adapted for medical use or veterinary use, food for babies; dietary supplements for humans and animals; plasters, materials for dressings; material for stopping teeth, dental wax; disinfectants; preparations for destroying vermin; fungicides, herbicides.

6. Common metals and their alloys; metal building materials; transportable buildings of metal; materials of metal for railway tracks; non-electric cables and wires of common metal; ironmongery, small items of metal hardware; pipes and tubes of metal; safes; ores.

7. Machines and machine tools; motors and engines (except for land vehicles); machine coupling and transmission components (except for land vehicles); agricultural implements other than hand-operated; incubators for eggs; automatic vending machines.

8. Hand tools and implements (hand-operated); cutlery; side arms; razors.

9. Scientific, nautical, surveying, photographic, cinematographic, optical, weighing, measuring, signalling, checking (supervision), life-saving and teaching apparatus and instruments; apparatus and instruments for conducting, switching, transforming, accumulating, regulating or controlling electricity; apparatus for recording, transmission or reproduction of sound or images; magnetic data carriers, recording discs; compact discs, DVDs and other digital recording media; mechanisms for coin-operated apparatus; cash registers, calculating machines, data processing equipment, computers; computer software; fire-extinguishing apparatus.

10. Surgical, medical, dental and veterinary apparatus and instruments; artificial limbs, eyes and teeth; orthopedic articles; suture materials.

11. Apparatus for lighting, heating, steam generating, cooking, refrigerating, drying, ventilating, water supply and sanitary purposes.

12. Vehicles; apparatus for locomotion by land, air or water.

13. Firearms; ammunition and projectiles; explosives; fireworks.

14. Precious metals and their alloys; jewellery, precious stones; horological and chronometric instruments.

15. Musical instruments.

16. Paper and cardboard; printed matter; bookbinding material; photographs; stationery; adhesives for stationery or household purposes; artists' materials; paintbrushes; typewriters and office requisites (except furniture); instructional and teaching material (except apparatus); plastic materials for packaging; printers' type; printing blocks.

17. Unprocessed and semi-processed rubber, gutta-percha, gum, asbestos, mica and substitutes for all these materials; plastics in extruded form for use in manufacture; packing, stopping and insulating materials; flexible pipes, not of metal.

18. Leather and imitations of leather; animal skins, hides; trunks and travelling bags; umbrellas and parasols; walking sticks; whips, harness and saddlery.

19. Building materials (non-metallic); non-metallic rigid pipes for building; asphalt, pitch and bitumen; non-Start Printed Page 80269metallic transportable buildings; monuments, not of metal.

20. Furniture, mirrors, picture frames; unworked or semi-worked bone, horn, ivory, whalebone or mother-of-pearl; shells; meerschaum; yellow amber.

21. Household or kitchen utensils and containers; combs and sponges; brushes (except paintbrushes); brush-making materials; articles for cleaning purposes; steelwool; unworked or semi-worked glass (except glass used in building); glassware, porcelain and earthenware.

22. Ropes and string; nets; tents, awnings and tarpaulins; sails; sacks; padding and stuffing materials (except of paper, cardboard, rubber or plastics); raw fibrous textile materials.

23. Yarns and threads, for textile use.

24. Textiles and substitutes for textiles; bed covers; table covers.

25. Clothing, footwear, headgear.

26. Lace and embroidery, ribbons and braid; buttons, hooks and eyes, pins and needles; artificial flowers.

27. Carpets, rugs, mats and matting, linoleum and other materials for covering existing floors; wall hangings (non-textile).

28. Games and playthings; gymnastic and sporting articles; decorations for Christmas trees.

29. Meat, fish, poultry and game; meat extracts; preserved, frozen, dried and cooked fruits and vegetables; jellies, jams, compotes; eggs; milk and milk products; edible oils and fats.

30. Coffee, tea, cocoa and artificial coffee; rice; tapioca and sago; flour and preparations made from cereals; bread, pastries and confectionery; edible ices; sugar, honey, treacle; yeast, baking-powder; salt; mustard; vinegar, sauces (condiments); spices; ice.

31. Agricultural, horticultural and forestry products; raw and unprocessed grains and seeds; fresh fruits and vegetables; natural plants and flowers; live animals; foodstuffs for animals; malt.

32. Beers; mineral and aerated waters and other non-alcoholic beverages; fruit beverages and fruit juices; syrups and other preparations for making beverages.

33. Alcoholic beverages (except beers).

34. Tobacco; smokers' articles; matches.

Services

35. Advertising; business management; business administration; office functions.

36. Insurance; financial affairs; monetary affairs; real estate affairs.

37. Building construction; repair; installation services.

38. Telecommunications.

39. Transport; packaging and storage of goods; travel arrangement.

40. Treatment of materials.

41. Education; providing of training; entertainment; sporting and cultural activities.

42. Scientific and technological services and research and design relating thereto; industrial analysis and research services; design and development of computer hardware and software.

43. Services for providing food and drink; temporary accommodation.

44. Medical services; veterinary services; hygienic and beauty care for human beings or animals; agriculture, horticulture and forestry services.

45. Legal services; security services for the protection of property and individuals; personal and social services rendered by others to meet the needs of individuals.

Start Signature

Dated: December 18, 2015.

Michelle K. Lee,

Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 2015-32467 Filed 12-23-15; 8:45 am]

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