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Amendments to Trademark Laws

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Okt 01, 2011 (Newsletter Issue 11/11)
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Mediation Service on the Way

OHIM is planning to introduce a mediation service as an alternative to proceeding with an appeal the the Boards of Appeal in trademark and design cases. The Service will be available from the end of October through the team of specially-trained mediators drawn from the Office's staff.
To qualify for the new service, an appeal must already have been filed (with payment of the normal appeal fee of EUR 800). If the mediation meetings take place at OHIM's premises in Aliante there is no further fee to pay. As an alternative, provision has been made for mediation to be offered at OHIM's Brussels office on payment of a fixed fee of EUR 750 to help defray the mediator's travel expenses.

The process of mediation is not binding on the parties but is expected to lead to the settlement of the appeal prcedure and to binding contracts between the parties in many cases. The altermative is to proceed with an appeal, which takes an average 1.5 years and in some cases is followed by further time consuming and expensive litigation again before the first Instance or at the Court of Justice in Luxembourg.