Friday, 2 July 2010

Modern look for Libya's trade mark law

The INTA Bulletin, vol. 65, no. 12 (1 July 2010) carries an article, excitedly entitled "LIBYA: A New Law Is Born!", which summarises the position in Libya following the recent introduction of its new trade mark law -- which still awaits the passage of implementing regulations before it can take effect. Replacing Law No. 40 of 1956, the new law
• defines “trade mark” broadly, so as to include trade names, sound marks and colour marks;
• provides for registration of collective and certification marks;
• permits priority claims based on earlier foreign applications;.
• subjects marks to cancellation by any interested party within five years from registration (or without time limit in the case of marks registered in bad faith);
• grants an initial protection period of ten years, infinitely renewable;
• recognizes and protects famous trade marks even for marks not registered there;
• provides for both civil and criminal actions against any infringing party, with penalties of up to two years’ imprisonment and payment of fines of up to US $7,500.

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