ARTICLE
12 January 2021

Amendments To The Trademark Registration Procedure In Angola

I
Inventa

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Inventa is a leading Intellectual Property Law Firm, specialized in the protection and internationalization of trademarks, patents, industrial designs, copyright and domain names. With over 50 years of experience in Portugal, the European Union and all the African jurisdictions, Inventa has served thousands of clients holding large trademark and patent portfolios, and other entities dealing with R&D daily. Furthermore, our experience allows us to understand the caveats of the different industries since we maintain relationships with clients from different sectors, including food and beverages companies, communications, IT, pharmaceuticals, manufacturers, oil & gas companies, financial institutions, business services companies and more. Our headquarters are based in Lisbon, Portugal, and we also have offices in Angola, Mozambique, Nigeria, Cape Verde, Sao Tome, East Timor and Macao.
There have been many changes in 2020 to procedures for registering industrial property rights in Angola, particularly with regard to trademark registration.
Angola Intellectual Property
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There have been many changes in 2020 to procedures for registering industrial property rights in Angola, particularly with regard to trademark registration. The most significant revision is the change to the payment period for granting fees, which alters the entire procedure for registering trademarks in the country, along with the possibility of requesting a 60-day extension.

Previously, granting fees were payable after the opposition period only. The Angolan Institute of Industrial Property (IAPI) proceeded with the substantive examination after these fees had been paid, meaning that there were two periods of payment.

The payment of granting fees after the opposition period caused considerable constraint on the registration system as there was no formal deadline to proceed with this payment. In many cases, applicants took years to pay fees, did not pay them until the marks were granted or refused to pay them altogether.

In addition, IAPI was prevented from spending resources on examining compliance with this formality and did not issue formal notifications to trademark applicants requesting payment.

Before the amendment, the trademark registration procedure consisted of the following steps:

  • filing the application at IAPI;
  • issuance of the official filing receipt with the official trademark number;
  • publication of the application in the Industrial Property Bulletin;
  • opposition period;
  • payment of granting fees;
  • substantive examination; and
  • publication of grant and issuance of the registration certificate.

Now, granting fees must be paid at the same time as the filing fees. This occurs when the trademark application is filed.

With the amendment, the procedure for trademark registration is as follows:

  • filing the trademark application at IAPI;
  • issuance of the official filing receipt with the official trademark number;
  • publication of the application in the Industrial Property Bulletin;
  • opposition period;
  • substantive examination; and
  • publication of grant and issuance of the registration certificate.

Although this measure entered into force a few weeks before activity at IAPI was suspended due to the covid-19 pandemic, it will undoubtedly be a positive measure for trademark registrations in Angola.

The trademark registration process can still be time-consuming and rather bureaucratic. While the mark may still take a few years to be granted, this measure will ease the bureaucracy in trademark registration procedures, since it eliminates a previously essential step and leads to trademark owners having their rights protected in a more prompt and effective way.

This is a co-published article, which was originally published in the World Trademark Review (WTR).

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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