Spain speeds up international registration process


The Spanish Patents and Trademarks Office (PTO) has made some amendments to its procedure that should considerably speed up the process of trademark registration, in particular for international applications designating Spain.

The PTO has waived the provisions of Article 49 of the Law on the Legal Regulation of Public Administrations and Ordinary Administrative Proceedings, and no longer extends the period for presentation of arguments against a provisional trademark registration refusal. The PTO has deemed the initial four-month period to be sufficient, finding that extensions only lead to an excessive and unjustified lengthening of the procedure.

The PTO has also stated that two weeks should be sufficient to examine the documents and arguments put forward by interested parties in the case of a provisional refusal. Accordingly, the PTO now issues most of its decisions within two weeks of the deadline set to reply to a provisional refusal, even though there is no legal time limit to examine an application.

It is certain that these measures, which will probably be followed by others in the near future, together with a faster communication process, will be welcomed by international organizations, professionals and the public at large, as they will see their requests dealt with (i) within a reasonable time frame, and (ii) with sufficient guarantees of their respective rights and interests.

Maria Dolores Garayalde, Mullerat, Madrid

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