Co-authored by Minh Anh Truong

In light of the ongoing COVID-19 outbreaks, IP Vietnam issued Notice No. 8181/TB-SHTT ("Notice 8181") on 9 September 2021 granting further deadline extensions for IP applicants. Under Notice 8181, all deadlines falling between 30 June and 31 October 2021 will automatically be extended to 30 November 2021. Notice 8181 follows Notice No. 7581/ TB-SHTT dated 2 August 2021 ("Notification 7581") allowing for deadline extensions for all procedures falling between 30 June and 31 August 2021, which we discussed previously in our article 'Update: How Covid-19 has affected IP Vietnam's practices and operations'.

Notice 8181 expressly covers deadline extensions for priority claims, submissions of documents, responses to notices/ decisions, annuity and renewal payments, filings of appeals, and payment of fees. As a matter of practice, IP Vietnam will apply Notice 8181 to all actions relating to intellectual property rights including, but not limited to, filings of requests for invalidation/cancellation, filings of responses to office actions in post-grant procedures, and filings of patent and industrial design applications.

Some of Notice 7581 remain effective with the issuance of Notice 8181.. In particular, procedures without specific deadlines or deadlines not falling within the provided period (i.e., 30 June 2021 and 31 October 2021) may enjoy extension by application of Force Majeure if the rightsholder has been affected by the outbreak of Covid-19 and provides evidence of the impact.

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.