Most countries in the world, with the notable exception of Canada, employ the International Trademark Classification System, adopted as part of the Nice Agreement. This system classifies trademarks in forty-five (45) broad categories of goods and services. When filing a trademark application, you must identify which class or classes of goods or services you wish to cover and pay a separate filing fee for each class. Because the trademark office reviews each class of goods independently, it is typically advantageous to file a separate application for each class sought. (That way if one class is rejected or requires further review, the other classes will not be held up and the applications will register faster).
The forty-five (45) classes of goods and services attempt to identity the fields to which the goods or services in particular class belongs. In general a product is classified according to its function or purpose and raw materials are classified according to the material of which they consist. Services are classified according to activity or in the case of information services, in the same classes as the services that correspond to the subject matter of the advice.
The International Trademark Classification system went into effect in the United States on September 1, 1973. Prior to that date, the United States used its own international classification system. The Committee of Experts of the Nice Union periodically publishes an updated classification list. The current edition of the classification system can be downloaded for free from WIPO’s website.
The current U.S. Trademark Class System is:
CLASS 1 (Chemicals) 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.
CLASS 2 (Paints) Paints, varnishes, lacquers; preservatives against rust and against deterioration of wood; colorants; mordants; raw natural resins; metals in foil and powder form for painters, decorators, printers and artists.
CLASS 3 (Cosmetics and cleaning preparations) Bleaching preparations and other substances for laundry use; cleaning, polishing, scouring and abrasive preparations; soaps; perfumery, essential oils, cosmetics, hair lotions; dentifrices.
CLASS 4 (Lubricants and fuels) Industrial oils and greases; lubricants; dust absorbing, wetting and binding compositions; fuels (including motor spirit) and illuminants; candles and wicks for lighting.
CLASS 5 (Pharmaceuticals) Pharmaceutical and veterinary preparations; sanitary preparations for medical purposes; dietetic substances adapted for medical use, food for babies; plasters, materials for dressings; material for stopping teeth, dental wax; disinfectants; preparations for destroying vermin; fungicides, herbicides.
CLASS 6 (Metal goods) 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; goods of common metal not included in other classes; ores.
CLASS 7 (Machinery) 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.
CLASS 8 (Hand tools) Hand tools and implements (hand-operated); cutlery; side arms; razors.
CLASS 9 (Electrical and scientific apparatus) 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; automatic vending machines and mechanisms for coin-operated apparatus; cash registers, calculating machines, data processing equipment and computers; fire-extinguishing apparatus.
CLASS 10 (Medical apparatus) Surgical, medical, dental and veterinary apparatus and instruments, artificial limbs, eyes and teeth; orthopedic articles; suture materials.
CLASS 11 (Environmental control apparatus) Apparatus for lighting, heating, steam generating, cooking, refrigerating, drying, ventilating, water supply and sanitary purposes.
CLASS 12 (Vehicles) Vehicles; apparatus for locomotion by land, air or water.
CLASS 13 (Firearms) Firearms; ammunition and projectiles; explosives; fireworks.
CLASS 14 (Jewelry) Precious metals and their alloys and goods in precious metals or coated therewith, not included in other classes; jewellery, precious stones; horological and chronometric instruments.
CLASS 15 (Musical Instruments) Musical instruments.
CLASS 16 (Paper goods and printed matter) Paper, cardboard and goods made from these materials, not included in other classes; printed matter; bookbinding material; photographs; stationery; adhesives for stationery or household purposes; artists’ materials; paint brushes; typewriters and office requisites (except furniture); instructional and teaching material (except apparatus); plastic materials for packaging (not included in other classes); printers’ type; printing blocks.
CLASS 17 (Rubber goods) Rubber, gutta-percha, gum, asbestos, mica and goods made from these materials and not included in other classes; plastics in extruded form for use in manufacture; packing, stopping and insulating materials; flexible pipes, not of metal.
CLASS 18 (Leather goods) Leather and imitations of leather, and goods made of these materials and not included in other classes; animal skins, hides; trunks and travelling bags; umbrellas, parasols and walking sticks; whips, harness and saddlery.
CLASS 19 (Nonmetallic building materials) Building materials (non-metallic); non-metallic rigid pipes for building; asphalt, pitch and bitumen; non-metallic transportable buildings; monuments, not of metal.
CLASS 20 (Furniture and articles not otherwise classified) Furniture, mirrors, picture frames; 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.
CLASS 21 (Housewares and glass) Household or kitchen utensils and containers; combs and sponges; brushes (except paint brushes); brush-making materials; articles for cleaning purposes; steelwool; unworked or semi-worked glass (except glass used in building); glassware, porcelain and earthenware not included in other classes.
CLASS 22 (Cordage and fibers) Ropes, string, nets, tents, awnings, tarpaulins, sails, sacks and bags (not included in other classes); padding and stuffing materials (except of rubber or plastics); raw fibrous textile materials.
CLASS 23 (Yarns and threads) Yarns and threads, for textile use.
CLASS 24 (Fabrics) Textiles and textile goods, not included in other classes; bed and table covers.
CLASS 25 (Clothing) Clothing, footwear, headgear.
CLASS 26 (Fancy goods) Lace and embroidery, ribbons and braid; buttons, hooks and eyes, pins and needles; artificial flowers.
CLASS 27 (Floor coverings) Carpets, rugs, mats and matting, linoleum and other materials for covering existing floors; wall hangings (non-textile).
CLASS 28 (Toys and sporting goods) Games and playthings; gymnastic and sporting articles not included in other classes; decorations for Christmas trees.
CLASS 29 (Meats and processed foods) 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.
CLASS 30 (Staple foods) Coffee, tea, cocoa, sugar, rice, tapioca, sago, artificial coffee; flour and preparations made from cereals, bread, pastry and confectionery, ices; honey, treacle; yeast, baking-powder; salt, mustard; vinegar, sauces (condiments); spices; ice.
CLASS 31 (Natural agricultural products) Agricultural, horticultural and forestry products and grains not included in other classes; live animals; fresh fruits and vegetables; seeds, natural plants and flowers; foodstuffs for animals, malt.
CLASS 32 (Light beverages) Beers; mineral and aerated waters and other non-alcoholic drinks; fruit drinks and fruit juices; syrups and other preparations for making beverages.
CLASS 33 (Wine and spirits) Alcoholic beverages (except beers).
CLASS 34 (Smokers’ articles) Tobacco; smokers’ articles; matches.
CLASS 35 (Advertising and business) Advertising; business management; business administration; office functions.
CLASS 36 (Insurance and financial) Insurance; financial affairs; monetary affairs; real estate affairs.
CLASS 37 (Building construction and repair) Building construction; repair; installation services.
CLASS 38 (Telecommunications) Telecommunications.
CLASS 39 (Transportation and storage) Transport; packaging and storage of goods; travel arrangement.
CLASS 40 (Treatment of materials) Treatment of materials.
CLASS 41 (Education and entertainment) Education; providing of training; entertainment; sporting and cultural activities.
CLASS 42 (Computer and scientific) Scientific and technological services and research and design relating thereto; industrial analysis and research services; design and development of computer hardware and software.
CLASS 43 (Hotels and restaurants) Services for providing food and drink; temporary accommodation.
CLASS 44 (Medical, beauty & agricultural) Medical services; veterinary services; hygienic and beauty care for human beings or animals; agriculture, horticulture and forestry services.
CLASS 45 (Personal) Legal services; security services for the protection of property and individuals; personal and social services rendered by others to meet the needs of individuals.