News on IP Laws
|April 15, 2013||Australia: The Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Raising the Bar) Act was enacted on April 15, 2012, and came into force in its entirety on April 15, 2013.
This Act includes the amendments to the Copyright Act 1968, the Patents Act 1990, the Trade Marks Act 1995, the Plant Breeder's Rights Act 1994, and the Designs Act 2003. The amendments address six key areas: raising the quality of granted patents, free access to patented inventions for regulatory approvals and research, reducing delays in resolution of patent and trade mark applications, assisting the operations of the IP profession, improving mechanisms for trade mark and copyright enforcement, and simplifying the IP system.
|February 1, 2013||Mexico: The Decree Promulgating the Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks was issued on February 1, 2013, by the President of Mexico, pursuant to Section I of Article 89 of Mexico’s Federal Constitution. By virtue of this Decree, published on February 8, 2013, the President has announced the Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks to be in force in Mexico from February 1, 2013, in accordance with Article 14(4)(b) of the Protocol, and the Madrid (Marks) Notification No. 198, in which the Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) notified the deposit by the Government of Mexico, on November 19, 2012, of its instrument of accession to the Protocol.|
|January 18, 2013||Denmark: The Order of January 18, 2013 on Patents and Supplementary Protection Certificates, issued by the Danish Patent and Trademark Office (DKPTO) came into force on February 1, 2013. It was issued pursuant to sections 5(2), 6(2), 8a, 8b(2), 9, 11, 22(7), 22(8), 28(2), 31, 34, 38(2), 45(2), 48(3), 69, 71(2), 88(1)(iii), 90, 91 and 97 of the Consolidate Patents Act (Consolidate Act No. 108 of January 24, 2012). This Order has repealed Order No. 93 of January 29, 2009 on Patents and Supplementary Protection Certificates, and introduced the new procedures for opposition, administrative re-examination, and termination of a patent, as specified in Part IV of the Order.|
|January 14, 2013||United States of America: H.R. 6621, entitled “An Act to Correct and Improve Certain Provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act and Title 35, United States Code” was passed by the United States Congress, signed into law by the President of the United States on January 14, 2013 and became Public Law No. 112-274. The Act makes a number of technical corrections to the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA), and other provisions of the Patent Act, title 35 of the United States Code. This new law makes technical changes to the AIA. Among the key amendments are: the elimination of the nine-month “dead zone”, during which certain patents were ineligible for post grant review (“PGR”) or inter partes review (“IPR”) (Section 1(d)); the extension of the deadline for an applicant to file an inventor’s oath or declaration until the date on which the issue fee for the patent is paid (Section 1(f)); the modification of requirements and time periods for activities relating to patent term adjustments (“PTA”) such as the adjustment period for certain international applications (Section 1(h)); the repeal of Section 373 of title 35, United States Code, on improper applicants (Section 1(i)); and the clarification of the time period to institute derivation proceedings (Section 1(k)(1)).|
|December 24, 2012||Ethiopia: The Council of Ministers Regulation No. 273/2012 of December 24, 2012 on Trademark Registration and Protection was issued on December 24, 2012 and entered into force on the same date. This Regulation brings into force a new trademark regime for the registration of trademark rights as provided in the Trademark Registration and Protection Proclamation No. 501/2006. Accordingly, it provides detailed provisions on the trademark registration process including the application for registration, examination, opposition, changes after registration, renewals, and invalidity and revocation of registration. In addition, it contains provisions relating to the transfer of ownership and license contract of a registered mark, and provisions on division, and merger of separate applications and registration of a series of trademarks. It further contains the Schedule on the Fees relating to trademark services. Article 59 of the Regulation stipulates that the Ethiopian Intellectual Property Office (EIPO) may issue directives necessary for the implementation of the 2006 Proclamation and this Regulation.|
|December 1, 2012||Australia: The Tobacco Plain Packaging Act 2011 (the Plain Packaging Act) was enacted by the Parliament on December 1, 2011 and entered into force in its entirety on December 1, 2012. This Act sets out the requirements for plain packaging and the appearance of tobacco products, the presentation of brand names and trademarks on tobacco products and packaging. Pursuant to Part 2 of Chapter 2 of the Act, the Tobacco Plain Packaging Regulations of 2011 were issued to provide for additional specific details on how the plain packaging requirements are to be implemented for tobacco products. The Trade Marks Amendment (Tobacco Plain Packaging) Act 2011 was enacted on the same date as the Plain Packaging Act to amend the Trade Marks Act 1995. It inserted a new section 231A to allow for regulations to be made under the Trade Marks Act 1995 to ensure that the tobacco plain packaging does not prevent the registration of new tobacco trademarks and the protection of registered tobacco trademarks against infringement. |
|November 7, 2012||Canada: The Copyright Act of 1985, has been amended by the Copyright Modernization Act, which was passed by the Parliament on June 29, 2012. Most of the amendments to the Copyright Act came into force on November 7, 2012, except for the provisions relating to the WIPO Internet Treaties, WCT and WPPT, and the Internet service provider notice-and-notice provisions. These amendments will bring Canada's copyright legislation in line with the international standards and with the evolving digital environment. |
|June 29, 2012||Canada: The Canadian Environmental Assessment Act was enacted by the Parliament on June 29, 2012 and entered into force on July 6, 2012. This Act aims to protect the environment from adversary effects of human activities. It especially promotes communication and cooperation with aboriginal peoples with respect to environmental assessments. Article 19(3) recognizes the value of considering aboriginal traditional knowledge when conducting an environmental assessment. The Act also guarantees the protection of traditional cultural expressions of aboriginal peoples. Article 5(c) of the Act stipulates that every environmental assessment should take into account the environmental effects and their potential impact on aboriginal peoples such as causing changes to their physical and cultural heritage, structures, sites or objects that are of historical, archaeological, paleontological or architectural significance.|
|December 28, 2011||Denmark: The Act Amending the Patents Act and Various Other Laws was adopted by the National Parliament of Denmark (Folketing) on December 28, 2011 and enters into force on February 1, 2012. It amends provisions concerning fees in the following laws: The Consolidated Patents Act, The Consolidated Trademarks Act, The Consolidated Designs Act, The Consolidated Utility Models Act, the Collective Marks Act and the Protection of the Topographies of Semiconductor Products Act. Henceforth, the publication fee of a Danish patent is modified so that the additional fee for publication, which is DKK 80 per page over 35 pages, will be charged, at the maximum, for 400 pages. This affects the publication of granted patents, validated European patents in Denmark and amended patents due to opposition or administrative re-examination. The Act supersedes the Order on the Fees of the Danish Patent and Trademark Office, which ceases to be the legal basis for fees from February 1, 2012.|
|October 12, 2011||Brunei Darussalam: The Patents Order, 2011 was approved by the Sultan of Brunei on October 12, 2011 and entered into force on January 1, 2012. It repeals the Emergency (Patents) Order, 1999 and Chapter 72 - Inventions. The Order establishes an independent patent system for the receipt, processing and grant of patents by a new Registry of Patents and facilitates the international filing of patents after Brunei has acceded to the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) and the Budapest Treaty.|
|September 16, 2011||United States of America: The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act was recently passed by the US Congress and on September 16, 2011, signed by the President of the United States into law. The various provisions contained in the 37 sections of the Act enter into force at various dates. The Act includes major changes to the Patent Law, Title 35 United States Code. The most significant change is the conversion of America's "first to invent" patent priority system to a "first to file" which is aimed at simplifying the patent process and harmonizing the US Patent System with other countries. The new Act also improves patent quality, reduces patent litigation costs and introduces new opportunities for challenging patents and patent applications before the U.S. Patents and Trademarks Office (USPTO).|
|June 29, 2011||Ecuador: Resolution No. 11-029 P-IEPI granting Direct Application to the Andean Community Decision with regard to Requests for Extension to file Oppositions against the Application for Registration of Distinctive Signs was issued by the Ecuadorian Institute of Intellectual Property on June 29, 2011. The Resolution came into force on July 1, 2011. It states that Article 146 of the Andean Community Decision No. 486, which provides for the time limit to file oppositions against the registration of distinctive signs, applies directly to Ecuador and therefore supersedes Article 208 of its Law on Intellectual Property (Consolidation No. 2006-013).|
|June 21, 2011||Paraguay: Decree No. 6.780/11 - By which Chapter IV "Of Compensatory Remuneration Rights" of Law No. 1.328/98 "Of Copyright and Neighboring Rights" is regulated, was issued by the President on June 21, 2011. This Decree provides economic remuneration to rights holders for acts of private copying.|
|June 16, 2011||Colombia: Law No. 1450 of 2011 - By which the National Plan of Development is issued, 2010 – 2014, was enacted by the Colombian Congress on June 16, 2011 and entered into force on the same date. Article 28 of this law amends Article 20 of Law 23 of 1982 - on Copyright with regards to the ownership of economic rights of works created under the existence of service agreements or employment contracts; article 29 concerns the ownership of industrial property rights generated under the existence of service agreements or employment contracts; article 30 amends Article 183 of Law No. 23 of 1982, regarding the contractual transfer regime of economic rights on copyrights and related rights; and article 31 concerns the ownership of intellectual property rights generated from research projects financed with national budget funds.|
|May 1, 2011||South Africa: The Companies Act, No. 71 of 2008 was assented to by the President on April 9, 2009 and entered into force on May 1, 2011. The Act provides for a regulatory framework for enterprises. Chapter 8 of the Act entitled "Regulatory Agencies and Administration of Act" establishes the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) of South Africa, to function as an organ of state within the public administration, focusing on the registration of companies and intellectual property rights. The additional functions of CIPC include education and awareness, investigation, compliance and enforcement.|
|April 28, 2011||Belarus: The President of the Republic of Belarus signed the Law of the Republic of Belarus of 17 May 2011 No. 262-3 (on Copyright and Related Rights), which was adopted by the National Assembly on April 28, 2011. The law was officially published on May 30, 2011 and, according to Article 61 of the law, it shall come into force six months after its official publication (i.e. November 30, 2011). Article 59 of the new law provides for the repeal of the Law of the Republic of Belarus of May 16, 1996 No. 370-XIII on Copyright and Related Rights. The new law regulates relations arising from the creation and use of works of science, such as books, articles, reports, scientific lectures, theses, literature and art (copyright), as well as performances, phonograms and broadcasting (related rights). Chapter IV on "Cases of free use of objects of copyright and related rights", regulates such issues as the free use of works in mass media (Article 33), reproduction of works for the blind and visually impaired persons (Article 34), and the free use of works by libraries and archives (Article 37).|
|April 26, 2011||Latvia: The Cabinet of Ministers Regulations No. 317 on the Rules of professional patent registry content, record-keeping procedures and patent attorney qualification exam procedures were issued by the Cabinet of Ministers on April 26, 2011 and entered into force on April 30, 2011. These Regulations relate to Patent Law No. 34 of 2007 and supersede the prior Cabinet of Ministers Regulations No. 602 on the rules of professional patent registry content, record-keeping procedures and patent attorney qualification exam procedures issued by the Cabinet of Ministers under the Patent Law No. 26.|
|April 14, 2011||Peru: The Supreme Decree approving the Regulation for Protecting the Rights of Plant Breeders, Supreme Decree No. 035-2011-PCM was issued by the President of the Republic on April 14, 2011 and entered into force on April 16, 2011, the day following its publication in the Official Journal. The Decree establishes a regulatory framework for the promotion and protection of the rights of plant breeders as provided for under Decision 345 of the Commission of the Cartagena Agreement and the International Convention for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants of 1991. In addition, by means of this same Decree, Supreme Decree Nº 008-96-ITINCI was repealed, as well as all other legal dispositions contrary to this new regulation.|
|April 6, 2011||Portugal: The Law No. 46/2011, of 24th June, which creates the Intellectual Property Court, was approved by the president of the Assembly of the Republic on April 6, 2011, promulgated by the President of the Republic on June 9, 2011 and entered into force on June 24, 2011. This Law creates a Court of special competence for intellectual property and a Court of special competence for competition.|
|March 16, 2011||China: The Decision of the State Council on Amending the Regulation on the Administration of Audio and Video Products was adopted at the 147th executive meeting of the State Council on March 16, 2011 and enters into force on March 19, 2011. It amends the Regulations on Administration of Audio and Video Products (2001). Article 10 of the Decision concerns the license for importation of audio and video products.
|March 16, 2011||China: The Decision of the State Council on Amending the Regulation on the Administration of Publications was adopted at the 147th executive meeting of the State Council on March 16, 2011 and enters into force on March 19, 2011. It amends the Regulations on the Administration of Publications (2001). Article 14 of the Decision concerns the publication of textbooks for elementary and secondary schools.|
|February 25, 2011||China: The Intangible Cultural Heritage Law was adopted at the 19th meeting of the Standing Committee of the Eleventh National People’s Congress on February 25, 2011 and enters into force on June 1, 2011. It protects intangible cultural heritage, such as traditional oral literature, fine arts, calligraphy, traditional medicine, traditional calendars, sports, etc. (Article 2, sections 1-6).
|January 18, 2011||Colombia: Law Nº 1437 of 2011 – By which the Administrative Procedure and Administrative Disputes Code is enacted, was approved by the Colombian Congress on January 18, 2011. According to Article 308 of this Law, the new Code will enter into force on July 2, 2012, repealing Decree Nº 01 of 1984 – By which the Code of Administrative Disputes is amended, as well as all other legal dispositions contrary to it.|
|December 23, 2010||Lithuania: The Law No XI-1264 of September 23, 2010 was promulgated by the President of the Republic of Lithuania on December 23, 2010 and enters into force on February 1, 2011. It amends the Criminal Procedure Code, Law No. IX-785, modifying Article 165 paragraph 1.|
|December 22, 2010||Montenegro: The 2011 Law on Legal Protection of Designs was enacted by the Montenegrin Parliament on December 22, 2010 and came into force on January 8, 2011. It repeals the Law on Legal Protection of Designs (2005). Under this new law, the industrial design registration procedure is simplified to achieve compliance with the relevant EU regulations. |
|November 22, 2010||China: The Provisional Measures on Application from Taiwan Applicants for Plant Variety Rights in the Mainland was adopted jointly by the Ministry of Agriculture and the State Forestry Administration on November 22, 2010 and entered into force on the same day. It provides the application procedures for Plant Variety Rights in Mainland China for applicants from Taiwan.|
|October 28, 2010||China: The Law of The People's Republic of China on the Laws Applicable to Foreign-related Civil Relations was adopted at the 17th meeting of the Standing Committee of the Eleventh National People’s Congress on October 28, 2010 and enters into force on April 1, 2011. It amends the General Principles of Civil Law, supplementing the provisions for the resolution of choice of law specifically in the area of intellectual property.
|September 10, 2010||Zimbabwe: Statutory Instrument 153 of 2010 was issued by the President of Zimbabwe and published on September 10, 2010. It brought the Trade Marks Amendment Act, 2001 into operation on that date.|
|September 10, 2010||Zimbabwe: Statutory Instrument 152 of 2010 was issued by the President of Zimbabwe and published on September 10, 2010. It brought the Intellectual Property Tribunal Act [Chapter 26:08] into operation on that date.|
|August 15, 2010||Algeria: Law No.10-05 of 5 Ramadan 1431, corresponding to 15 August 2010, was promulgated by the President of the Republic of Algeria on August 15, 2010 and entered into force on August 18, 2010. It amends and supplements Ordinance No. 03-03 of 19 Jumada El Oula 1424, corresponding to 19 July 2003, on competition, modifying Articles 2, 4, 5, 24, 73. |
|August 9, 2010||Uganda: The Trademarks Act, No. 17 of 2010 was signed into law by the President of the Republic of Uganda on August 9, 2010 and entered into force on September 3, 2010. It repealed the Trademarks Act, Cap. 217, 1953, which had no provision for registration of service marks.|
|August 4, 2010||Kenya: The new Constitution of Kenya was adopted on August 4, 2010 and entered into force on August 27, 2010. It replaces the first Constitution of Kenya, which was adopted in 1963. Article 11.2(c) of the new Constitution obliges the state to "promote the intellectual property rights of the people of Kenya". |
|July 19, 2010||Colombia: The Copyright Law No. 1403 of 2010 (or Law “Fanny Mikey”) was signed into law by the President of the Republic on July 19, 2010, and entered into force on the same day. It amends the Copyright Law No. 23 of 1982, and provides remuneration for public communication to artists and performers of audiovisual works and sound recordings. |
|June 30, 2010||Pakistan: The Customs Act, 1969, (IV of 1969) as amended up to June 30, 2010 is the latest consolidated version of the Pakistan Customs Act, 1969 and incorporates several changes of terminology.|
|March 24, 2010||China: The Decision of the State Council on Amending the Regulations on Customs Protection of Intellectual Property Rights was promulgated by the State Council on March 24, 2010 and entered into force on April 1, 2010. It amends the Regulations on Customs Protection of Intellectual Property Rights, 2003, revising the provisions concerning Intellectual Property infringement. |
|February 26, 2010||China: The Decision of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress on Amending the Copyright Law of the People’s Republic of China, was adopted at the 13th Meeting of the Standing Committee of the Eleventh National People’s Congress on February 26, 2010 and entered into force on April 1, 2010. It amends the Copyright Law, 2001, supplementing provisions concerning public interest and copyright pledge. |
|January 19, 2010||Lithuania: The Law on Copyright and Related Rights No XI-656 was signed into law by the President of the Republic of Lithuania on January 19, 2010 and entered into force on February 2, 2010. It amended the Law on Copyright and Related Rights No VIII-1185 of May 18, 1999, modified Articles 17 and 71 and added Article 711 on Supervision of Activities of Associations of Collective Administration of Copyright and Related Rights.|
|January 9, 2010||China: The Decision of the State Council on Amending the Implementing Regulations of the Patent Law of the People's Republic of China was promulgated by the State Council on January 9, 2010 and entered into force on February 1, 2010. It amends the Rules for the Implementation of the Patent Law of the People's Republic of China, 2002, revising the provisions concerning patents and genetic resources. |