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Ghana (GH)

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Mai 13, 2015 (Newsletter Issue 7/15)
Official Fees Increased
The official filing fees have been increased by the Management of the Registrar-General’s Office in accordance with Legislative Instrument 2216, 2014 with effect from April 13, 2015.

The general increase across the board is between 33% to 50%. The new official fee for filing a trademark is now USD 200 instead of USD 150. The application for a Registration Certificate is now USD 200. Lodging of a Notice of Opposition is USD 180.

Source: JAH & Co. IP, Qatar

Jan 13, 2015 (Newsletter Issue 1/15)
Trademark Law Amended
The Trademarks (Amendment) Act, 876 of 2014 came into force on July 25, 2014. It amended the existing Trademarks Act, 664 of 2004. The reason why it becomes public now is that it seems to have been shrouded in secrecy – to the extent that even the Registry was unaware of its publication.

The most noteworthy change is that the Madrid Protocol has now officially been incorporated into Ghanaian law. In fact, Ghana alread signed up to the Madrid Protocol on June 16, 2008, but, as Ghana is a common law country, the agreement only became part of domestic law once it was formally incorporated. As there is nothing in the Amendment Act to suggest that it has retrospective effect, doubts about IR covering Ghana that predate the effective date July 25, 2014, remain.

For further information, please check the news from Spoor & Fisher here

Source: Spoor & Fisher, South Africa

Legal basis is the Trade Marks Act 664 of 2004, the Trade Marks (Amendment) Act 876 of 2014; the Trade Marks Regulations made under the previous Trade Marks Act 270 of 1965, the Trade Marks Regulations of 1970, the Trade Marks (Amendment) Regulation of 1972 and the Geographical Indications Act 669 of 2003. The 1965 Act has been repealed by the 2004 Act but the latter states that any regulations made under the 1965 Act and in force when the 2004 Act entered into force continue to apply under the corresponding provisions of the 2004 Act until revoked. The regulations promulgated in terms of the 1965 Act have not been repealed yet and thus remain in force.
Ghana is a member of the Paris Convention. Ghana also signed the Madrid Protocol on June 16, 2008. Effective July 25, 2014, the Madrid Protocol has been officially incorporated into Ghanaian law. Ghana is also a member of the WTO/TRIPS.
Trademark protection is obtained by registration.
It can also be acquired by sufficient public recognition.
Nice classification (10th edition).
Registrable as a trade mark is any sign or combination of signs capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one undertaking from the goods or services of other undertakings, including words such as personal names, letters, numerals and figurative elements.
The following types of trade marks are registrable: trade marks for goods, trade marks for services certification marks and collective trade marks.
The application is filed with the Registrar of Trade Marks.
A separate application has to be filed for each class.
Foreign applicants need a local agent.
Foreign applicants do not need a domestic registration.
The following information and documents are required for registration:
- A power of attorney, simply signed
- Full particulars of the applicant
- List of goods or services to be covered
- A representation of the trade mark (if not a word mark)
- Priority document (if applicable)
The application process includes an examination as to formal as well as substantive requirements.
Signs not deemed distinctive during examination can be registered if distinctiveness has been acquired by use.
Trademark applications accepted by the Registrar are published in the official gazette prior to registration.
The approximate time frame for completing the registration process of a trademark in Ghana is one year.
The opposition period is 2 months from the publication date of the application in the Official Gazette, extendable at the discretion of the Register for any time he deems ‘reasonable’.

Details regarding the Opposition Period against designation of IR Mark are available in our publication on this topic here
Protection begins with the date of application. A trademark registration is valid for 10 years from date of application. The registration is renewable for periods of 10 years.
A 6 months grace period is allowed for late renewal against payment of a surcharge.

Further practical details are available in our publication on this topic here
An interested person may apply to the Registrar for an order removing a trade mark from the register on the basis that the trade mark has not been used by its owner or a licensed user for a continuous period of five years or longer up to one month before the application for removal in relation to the goods or services for which the mark was registered.

Further practical details are available in our publication on this topic here
The official fee for filing a trademark application is USD 150. The application for a Registration Certificate is USD 150.

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Country Index is a free service of SMD Group. We thank the following law firms for their assistance in updating the information provided.

Feb 17, 2017
Triebel IP, Pretoria, South Africa  

Sep 21, 2015
Triebel IP, Pretoria, South Africa  

Jul 18, 2014
Brian Bacon Inc., Cape Town, South Africa
DM Kisch Inc., Sandton, South Africa

The Registrar General, Registrar General's Department, Ministry of Justice
P. O. Box 118
Accra, Ghana
Tel +233 302 664 461-3
Fax +233 302 666 081/302 662 043

African Regional Industrial Property Organization (ARIPO)
11 Natal Road

P.O. Box 4228

Tel +263 47 94 0 65 68
Fax +263 47 94 07 2 or 3

World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
34, Chemin des Colombettes
1211 Geneva 20
Tel +41 22 33 89 11 1
Fax +41 22 73 35 42 8