New practice for renewal of trade names
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The Colombian Trademark Office has issued Opinion 08048285 (June 20 2008), which changes the office's practice with regard to the deposit of trade names.
Previously, the office had established that the renewal of trade names was governed by the following distinction:
- Trade names deposited before the coming into force of Andean Community Decision 486 on a Common Industrial Property Regime had to be renewed 10 years after the date of entry into force of the decision (ie, by December 1 2010); and
- Trade names deposited after the coming into force of Decision 486 had to be renewed 10 years after the date of the deposit, as established in Article 196 of the decision.
The new opinion removes the requirement to renew the deposit of trade names on the grounds that Decision 486 makes a distinction between the registration and the deposit of trade names. Therefore, according to the office, only trade name registrations must be renewed.
In Colombia, trade names are deposited with the office, but registration is not available. Previously, it was understood that:
- the deposit of a trade name was equivalent to registration; and
- Decision 486 referred to both terms because the national laws of the member states of the Andean Community used different terms to describe the same process.
Following the issuance of Opinion 08048285, the deposit and registration of trade names will no longer be considered to be equivalent, and deposits will remain valid indefinitely.
Margarita Castellanos, Castellanos & Co, Bogota
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