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Amendments to Trademark Laws

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Nov 13, 2009 (Newsletter Issue 4/09)
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Trademark Law Amended

On July 15th, 2009 Belarus passed the Law on the Introduction of Amendments to the Law of Republic of Belarus on Trademarks and Service Marks. The Law enters into force on January 25th, 2010.

The amendments shall bring Belarusian law in line with European countries' laws in order to facilitate eventual accession of the country to the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Among other novelties, a chapter on well-known marks is added to the Law, which introduces a definition of a well-known mark an specifies the procedure for recognition of a mark a well-known. The Law is to establish that the term of protection for a well-known mark is infinite, unless its status is successfully changed.

Further there will be the following amendments with regard to the registration procedure of trademarks:

The Law states that it is allowed to register a trademark which term of legal protection has expired, in the name of a new owner not earlier than six months after the expiry of registration. However, if the mark owner has voluntarily withdrawn its trademark registration, the new applicant may register the mark without waiting six months.

The non-use grace period is reduced from five to three years.

The use of trademarks in the Internet and domain names are accepted by the Law.

The Law will not apply to applications that will be pending as of January 25th, 2010.

Source: Dr. Sergey Vinogradov, Pag-e-Pag, Minsk, Belarus and