OHIM introduces guidelines on trademark and design practices13 December 2012
Manev&Partners are pleased to inform you that OHIM is taking actions towards implementing a new process for reporting the practices on trademark and design, which will be a valuable source for the Office's practice.
Currently, this is reflected in the Manuals on trade mark practices and registered designs, which have been recently revised. The Office also has its Guidelines on Community designs and trademarks, however it's not regularly updated.
The new process
The above mentioned entails the need of a new source of reference for the Office's practice. It will be stated clearly, structured well and will be easy to read by everyone, not only the experts in the field. It's said in a letter, sent by the President Campinos in May 2012 to the National IP Offices, that the process will be cyclical and open. Cyclical because it will be updated on a yearly basis, split into two "work packages" which will run over a twelve month period every year - the first package between January and December and the second between July and June. The process will take into consideration the feedback from the National Offices and the user associations, thus it will be open.
The efforts put into this new process aim to increase the coherence between instances, the predictability and the quality of Office's operations and facilitate the procedures before OHIM.
The three phases of the process:
The process will be structured in three phases with several steps each. First will be triggering of the update by stakeholders - informing users for the plan to revise the practice, which is already done. Here they can submit comments which will be taken into consideration when preparing the guidelines. At second place is the preparation of the draft of Guidelines by the Office - they are produced by OHIM's cross-departmental teams and here the feedbacks and comments received during the preceding phases are included. During the third phase will be completed the adoption of the Guidelines. Here is done the translation procedure into all the official languages of the EU.
The first cycle with items of practice in Work package 1 will be started in January 2013 and it's expected to be completed by December 2013.
The guidelines will considerably increase the effectiveness of the Office, provide users and local representatives with detailed information on practices and maybe facilitate the work by directly solving similar or identical cases.
Manev&Partners team and the European trademarks and design attorneys contributing to the team are pleased with OHIM's initiatives and welcome the Guidelines as we see it as valuable source of information and exceptionally helpful in the practice and in the European system for protection of trademarks and designs. We are convinced that combined, the Guidelines, the feedback from the users and the professionalism we put into work, will help us work even better with our clients.
Source of information: OHIM