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Canadian Trademark Law - Special Update

November 15, 2018


Big news in Canada: at long last, the government announced a firm date for the coming into force of amendments to Canadian trademark laws, including adherence to the Madrid Protocol - June 17, 2019! New Trademark Regulations were also published.

We remind you of a few key practice tips to keep in mind before the new law comes into effect:

  • File Early: The removal of the requirement that marks be used before registration in the new legislation is expected to increase trademark "trolling". Protect brands by filing early.

  • File Applications for New Marks: The adoption of Nice Classification of goods and services will bring per-class fees resulting in higher filing costs. Therefore, consider filing new applications in Canada as soon as possible for new marks to save on government fees and secure rights against third parties. For now, multi-class applications are still available for a single government fee.

  • Fill in Gaps: To protect marks of interest, consider whether current coverage in existing applications and registrations properly reflects all the marks of interest, covers all goods and services of interest, and covers the current presentation of the marks. Fill in gaps by filing new applications to cover all important marks and goods and services.

  • Renew Existing Registrations Early: The term of registration will be shortened from 15 to 10 years and, like applications, fee-per-class will be introduced upon renewal. Therefore, consider renewing registrations due in 2019 early to save fees.

The Goodmans IP Team would be pleased to discuss any questions you may have regarding the impact of these changes. We will have more detailed information for you regarding these changes in the coming weeks.


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