A trademark is a distinctive sign, symbol or expression used to identify the products or services of a company from those of another. It guarantees the genuineness of the product of service, and gives its holder the legal rights to avoid their trademark’s unauthorized use.
- It is the only way of obtaining rights to the trademark. - It provides national and/or local protection. - It allows to demonstrate ownership of the trademark. - It helps to discourage other people from using the trademark unlawfully. - Trademarks allow your business to effectively utilize the social media and make your customers find you easily. - If anyone uses your registered trademark, he/she will be presumed to be a willful infringer, and registering a trademark confers the ability to recover monetary damages as a result of the infringement. - If you don’t register your trademark and someone else registers a trademark very similar to yours, you’ll have to change its name and spend a lot of money changing advertising. It’s also possible that you lose customers.
- Words - Names - Devices - Certain three-dimensional shapes - Colors - Slogans - Sounds - Smells (olfactory trademarks) - Flavors
Trademark protection in Panama is granted for a period of 5 to 10 years and can be renewed for additional periods. A renewal application must be filed within a year before expiration date.
The approximate time from application to registration (for a prosecution without an opposition) is eight to ten months.
An application is published for opposition purposes after formal examination of the application. The opposition period begins the day after the publication of the mark in the Industrial Property Bulletin and ends two months counted as from the day after the publication of the mark.
- Name and address of the applicant. - State or country of incorporation. - Trademark description. - List of goods or services provided. - Trademark representation. - Power of attorney. - Statement of use. - Dates of first use. - Statement of intention to use. - Official filing fee.
- Joint applicants are permitted in Panama. - Actual use or intent to use are required for application. - The list of goods and services may specify the relevant class heading, plus a specific list of goods and/or services. - In Panama, the type of registration available is national. - All documents must be translated into Spanish by an official translator. However, the translation can also be certified in Panama. - All signed documents must be apostilled. - Panama uses the Nice Classification System. - Panama is a member of the Paris Convention, the Trademark Law Treaty, and the Nice Agreement. - Panama is not a party to either the Madrid Agreement or the Madrid Protocol and may not be designated in international applications. - European Union Trade Mark registration is not effective in Panama. - Multinational regional registrations are not available in Panama. - Applications cannot be filed online. - The official file can be accessed online.
If your trademark has been successfully registered and it is time for you to renew it, you can start the procedure one year before the expiration date. There is a six-month grace period to renew the trademark after the expiration date.
If you do not renew on time, you will need to file a complete new application.
Once renewed, it will be valid for another ten-year period starting from the previous expiration date.
Trademark renewal requirements:
- Name and address of the applicant. - Trademark description. - List of goods or services provided (the registration of new products or services is not allowed). - Power of Attorney. - Trademark registration number.
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