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Amendments to Trademark Laws

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Jun 25, 2024 (Newsletter Issue 5/24)
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Ministry of Commerce Resumed Services

Services provided by the Ministry of Commerce (MCI) in Haiti were interrupted effective 29 February 2024 due to an extended period of civil unrest. Services have now resumed effective 4 June 2024. On 3 June 2024 the MCI advised in an official statement that all deadlines relating to the protection and maintenance of IP rights (including trademarks) that fell due within the interrupted period have been extended by one month to 4 July 2024. A new government has been formed in Haiti, but gang violence is still prevalent which may cause further closures and delays.

Directive 03/DAJ/MCI concerning the examination of applications for the registration of trademarks for goods or services was issued by the Legal Affairs Directorate in September 2023 and stipulated some new requirements for Authorised Representatives in Haiti, including the requirement for Powers of Attorney / appointments of Authorised Representatives to be legalised before the Haitian Consulate when executed outside of Haiti. Haiti is not party to the Hague Convention so documents cannot be legalised by apostille for submission in Haiti. The Directive also calls for the legalisation of assignment contracts when executed outside of Haiti.

It is understood that the MCI is currently reevaluating the requirement for consular legalisation and it is hoped that this formality will be retracted in the near future.