Wednesday 8 October 2008

Darren Olivier

OAPI – PUBLICATION OF “BOPI” (Official Intellectual Property Bulletin)

Forchak Valentine of Forchak IP & Legal Advisory has alerted Afro-IP to the fact that “OAPI” has recently published the first edition of the quarterly Official Bulletin of Intellectual Property “BOPI” No. 1/2008 dated 20th of September 2008. It covers a wide range of subject matter – patents, trademarks, industrial designs, utility models, commercial names etc. The Bangui Agreement governing the OAPI Trademarks Law provides that once published, any interested party can opposed the registration of a trademark within a maximum period of six (06) months by filing a Notice of Opposition and stating therein the grounds of opposition. After the expiration of the statutory period of 06 months, the registration certificate becomes final and unchallengeable. Therefore the deadline to comply with the procedure to oppose a trademark is fixed on the 20th March 2009. If anyone would like to receive copies of this IP Journal please send and email here.

Six months may sound like a long enough time but it is in reality very short and the penalty appears to that the registration becomes final and unchallengeable. As there is a provision for cancellation to the Oapi Courts this must refer to a period before registration of the trade mark?

Darren Olivier

Darren Olivier

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13 October 2008 at 14:42 delete

The law does not mean that the registration cannot be challenged after the opposition period expires. But cancellation proceedings have to be brought before the courts in one of the member states rather than before OAPI; OAPI being a Patent and Trade Mark Registry, there are no OAPI courts.