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Merida & Asociados
Guatemala City, Guatemala (GT)

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Guatemala (GT)

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Latest News: 10-05-2017 (Newsletter Issue 17/17)
Apostille Convention in Force
On September 18, 2017, the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents (Apostille Convention) entered into force for Guatemala.

The country had acceded to the Apostille Convention on January 19, 2017. No objections were raised to its accession.

Source: www.hcch.net


Latest News: 06-28-2017 (Newsletter Issue 12/17)
Accession to Trademark Law Treaty and Regulations
On May 29, 2017, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs published the ratification of the Trademark Law Treaty and the Regulations (TLT) which was made by the President of the Republic of Guatemala.

The Treaty will apply to all product and service trademarks if they are visible signs, (including three-dimensional trademarks) except holograms and non-visible signs, and specially sound marks and olfactory marks.

The requirements and procedures of the applications for registration of trademarks will be still regulated on the Law on Industrial Property and its Regulations, until the necessary modifications which result from the implementation of the aforementioned Treaty are made.

Source: Arias, Guatemala


02-22-2017 (Newsletter Issue 4/17)
Accession to Hague Apostille Convention
On January 19, 2017, the Republic of Guatemala deposited its instrument of accession to the Hague Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents (Apostille Convention).

Following the usual procedural steps, the Convention will enter into force for Guatemala on September 18, 2017.

Pursuant to Article 12 of the Apostille Convention the Depositary shall give notice to the Contracting States of the accession of Guatemala.

Source: www.hcch.net


11-18-2013 (Newsletter Issue 16/13)
Online Pre-Filing Available
The Trademark Office in Guatemala has recently implemented online filing through its website.

At this time only pre-filing is available. All pertinent information can be digitally submitted and stored under a provisional serial number but a physical application has still to be submitted and a definitive serial number is assigned. The filing date assigned will be the one in which the physical application is filed at the Trademark Office.

It is expected that the filing process will become entirely digital once the IP laws will be amended.

Source: Bufelco Propiedad Industrial, Guatemala


12-01-2011 (Newsletter Issue 14/11)
Legal Notices Electronically
The Congress of the Republic of Guatemala has enacted the Law Regulating Notifications by Electronic Means in the Judicial Organ. by the Decree 15-2011.

In all judicial and administrative proceedings before the Judiciary Offices, the parties and their attorneys may be served at the email address previously indicated. Both the parties and their attorneys may join the system voluntarily by filling their respective membership forms where they grant their consent to join the system.

Notifications made electronically have the same effect and validity as those made in accordance with procedural rules, except when a legal provision provides that the notification must be made in person. The Decree is effective since 19 October 2011.

Source: Lexincorp Central America, Guatemala, Guatemala


05-09-2010 (Newsletter Issue 10/10)
Renewal of Slogans
The actual law established that all slogans "executed conforming to the previous laws will be due when ten years are accomplished up to the legal effect of this law".

That means that slogans registered on/or after November 1st, 2000 have a duration of 10 years from the registration date.

Slogans registered before November 1st, 2000 have to be renewed until October 31st, 2010.


12-14-2009 (Newsletter Issue 4/09)
Adoption of the 9th Edition of the Nice Classivication
The Official Newspaper in Guatemala, published on June 22nd, decision 443-2009 taken by the Ministry of Economy, enables the TM Office to use the 9th Edition of the Nice Classification to distinguish goods and services for the registration of trademarks.


Apart from the Paris Convention and TRIPS, the legal framework is primarily comprised by the Industrial Property Law (Decree of Congress 57-2000 and amendments), which came into effect November 1, 2000, and the executive regulations to such Law (Executive Accord 89-2002 and amendments). Amendments to the IP Law were last made in June 2013, arising from an Association Agreement entered with the European Union.
Trademark protection is obtained by registration (“first to file” system).Prior use in Guatemala is only required for the registration of tradenames. In such case registration is only declarative (an exception to the “first to file” system).
Nice classification, 10th edition
Admissible as trademarks are all distinctive signs which can be graphically represented, such as words or groups of words, letters, numbers, monograms, forms, portraits, labels, shields, stamps, vignettes, borders, lines, fringes, combination and arrangement of colors, as well as any combination of these symbols. They can also consist of sounds or smells, the shape of products, their packaging or wrapping or the means or places of sale of the products or services (“trade dress”), and others which may be able to distinguish. The following categories of signs are admitted for registration: trademarks, service marks, slogans, collective marks, certification marks, geographical indications and appellations of origin, emblems and trade names.
Slogan marks are protectable as a separate category of IP rights, known as advertising slogans (National Class 99), which for the most part grant trademark like rights.
Well known marks are protected in Guatemala, even lacking registration. However use in Guatemala or at least promotion of the mark by any means having an effect in the country, must be shown in such cases.
The application is filed at the Trademark and Patent Office (Registry of Intellectual Property).
A separate application has to be filed for each class (multi-class applications are not yet allowed).
Foreign applicants need a duly empowered local agent (Attorney at Law).
A power of attorney granted by the applicant, must be duly legalized by the nearest Guatemalan Consulate (Guatemala is not a member of the Hague Apostille Convention). Filings can be made through an unofficial agent (“gestor oficioso”), until the POA arrives and the unofficial actions made on behalf of applicant are ratified.
Foreign applicants do not need a domestic registration and/or incorporation.
The application process includes a formal examination. Afterwards, an inherent distinctiveness analysis of the mark as well as a search / clearance of conflicting third parties' rights are carried out.
After examination and once formal admission has been secured, the trademark application must be published in the Official Bulletin of the Intellectual Property Register (BORPI) in a single digital publication. Such publication must be carried out within the 6 months from the date where the publication notice was served to applicant, otherwise application becomes abandoned “ipso facto”.
If there is no opposition lodged against the application, registration duties are paid and the certificate of registration is issued in approximately 2-3 months.
National:
The opposition period is 2 months from the date of the publication in the Official Bulletin of the Intellectual Property Register (BORPI).
The deadline for filing an opposition would be calculated as follows:
1. Publication takes place on August 20, 2015, deadline to oppose elapses October 20, 2015;
2. If October 20, 2015 were to fall on a weekend or any other non-working day the deadline would be moved to the prior working day.
Protection begins with the date of registration. A trademark registration is valid for 10 years from the date of registration. The registration is renewable for periods of 10 years.
The grace period is 6 months from the expiration date of the trademark. During this term the trademark remains in full effect and is considered valid and in force by the Intellectual Property Register.

Further practical details are available in our publication on this topic here
Use obligation comes into effect 5 years after registration. If the trademark has not been used for a continuous period of at least 5 years, either calculated from registration or at any other time, it may be subject to cancellation due to non-use.
Cancellation due to non-use is not verified ex-officio, but instead is subject to a judiciary civil action being brought by an interested party which desires to cancel the registration.


Further practical details are available in our publication on this topic here
The official fees (filing and issuance of edict) for a trademark application are GTQ 310.00 for one class. The publication fee in the Official Bulletin of the Intellectual Property Register (BORPI) is GTQ 600.00 average, but varies largely based on the fact that cost is levied on the amount of goods or services to be covered by the application. The registration fee including issuance of certificate is GTQ 290.00. There are other disbursements in the process which must also be taken into account (notarisation expenses, stamp taxes, etc.)

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Practical details on licensing procedures, requirements and effectiveness are available in our publication on this topic here.
Search type First class Add. class
Word Mark Search (availability) 230,00 € 190,00 € 
Word Mark Search (identical) 210,00 € 170,00 € 

The Prices above are SMD Group Search Fees
Country Index is a free service of SMD Group. We thank the following law firms for their assistance in updating the information provided.

Country Survey
10-15-2015
Bufelco Bufete Lopez Cordero, Guatemala City, Guatemala

08-28-2013
Bufelco Bufete Lopez Cordero, Guatemala City, Guatemala

08-20-2012
Bufelco Bufete Lopez Cordero, Guatemala City, Guatemala

11-18-2010
Moeller IP Advisors, Buenos Aires, Argentina



Merida & Asociados



Armando Mérida

Armando Mérida
20 calle 12-51 "A" zona 10.
01010 Guatemala City
Guatemala (GT)
Tel +502 2366 7427
Fax +502 2366 7423
amerida@meridayasociados.com.gt
www.meridayasociados.com.gt

The Law Firm of Mérida & Asociados, was founded in 1994, by Mr. Armando Mérida, who brought with him the experience of having worked previously for a very prestigious Law Firm in Guatemala City and in the legal department of international banks in the same city.

The Law Firm is able to offer services in Corporate and Commercial Law, Business Law, Banking Law, Trademarks and Patents, Litigation, Civil and Notary Law.

Merida & Asociados recently joined the International Law Firm “Justinian Lawyers”, which is a law firm with currently 83 Law Firms around the world. The Law firm is now called “Justinian Lawyers-Mérida & Asociados”. As an international Law Firm we are then able to offer our services in different parts of the world. We provide to our clients a good and reliable service. Our clients correspond with us in Spanish, English and German. English is used normally every day as a second language.

The Firm is also member of the international network of lawyers called AEA (European Association of Lawyers).

Registrador General de la Propiedad Intelectual de Guatemala
7a. Avenida 7-61 zona 4
Segundo Nivel
Guatemala
Centro America
Tel +502 232 470 70
Mail sylvia.ruiz@rpi.gob.gt
www.rpi.gob.gt
Registradora General
Licda. Sylvia Ruiz Hochstetter