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Amendments to Trademark Laws

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Okt 01, 2010 (Newsletter Issue 15/10)
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New Trademark Rules

Ireland's new Trade Marks (Amendment) Rules 2010 came into effect on October 4th, 2010. They will modernise trade mark proceedings before the Patents Office in several ways. In particular,
- a new procedure gives parties to an opposition the option to file written submissions in lieu of attending a hearing.

- procedures for an application for a declaration of invalidity have been substantially amended, to align them with opposition procedures. Accordingly an invalidity action will involve filing a notice of opposition/counter-statement by way of defence; evidence in support of the action by the applicant for invalidity; evidence by the proprietor of the contested mark; evidence in reply by the applicant for invalidity; and further evidence, with the leave of the Office.

- the number of marks which may appear in a series is to be limited to a maximum of six marks.

- the merger of an applicant or proprietor company with a separate company will now be capable of being dealt with like an assignment, rather than as an amendment to the register.

- the deadline to request a hearing has been extended from 10 days to 21 days.

- a new application form now allows the applicant to declare that it is using the mark or has a good-faith intention to use it, rather than having to choose between the two options.

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