Belarus: Changes on legal protection of trade and service marks will come into effect on 15 July 2016.
In line with the amendments, the exclusive right to a trademark will be based on the right of its owner to use the trademark, dispose of it, and prohibit use of the trademark to others. In this context under use of a trademark the law recognizes its application:
1) on goods produced, offered for sale or otherwise put into civil circulation, stored, transported or imported into Belarus for putting into civil circulation, as well as on labels and packaging of those goods;
2) on documents connected to putting goods into civil circulation;
3) while executing work or performing services, or both;
4) in advertising, printed media, on signs, on items displayed at exhibitions and markets held in Belarus;
5) on the Internet (including domain names or other method(s) of identification).
The law sets a deadline for examination – a maximum two years from the date of approving the application.
The novelty in trademark registration is that the registration authorities will be obliged to publish on the official website of the patent authority information about applications that pass the preliminary examination and are accepted for examination. This may help other interested parties to obtain advance information about potential trademark registration. Unfortunately, they cannot object or otherwise hinder trademark registration at this stage.
Significant changes affected norms on trademark protection. In particular, liability in the form of a fine at the rate of the cost of goods containing an illegally used trademark has been abolished. However, instead, the trademark owner or the person to whom the right to use the trademark has been granted under an exclusive licensing agreement may claim compensation of losses up to fifty thousand base values (the exact value is determined by court taking into consideration the character of violation).
Some changes were made to the Civil Code of the Republic of Belarus. In particular, commercial organizations will be forbidden to grant the right to use intellectual property rights free of charge between one another.
For more information, please follow the link.
Source: National legal Internet portal of the Republic of Belarus (NLIP) 14.01.2016, 2/2350