From , the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) has increased the early renewal window for International Registrations under the Madrid Protocol.
It is now possible to renew an international trade mark up to 6 months prior to the renewal deadline – an increase from the previously allowed 3-month early renewal period.
WIPO has also stated it will process renewals upon receipt, rather than at the renewal date.
However, there are no changes to:
- the date of effect of the renewal — the renewed registration period will be extended from the existing renewal deadline;
- the duration of international registrations — which will remain at 10-year renewable terms; or
- the existing 6 month window allowed for grace period renewals (ie renewals after the deadline has lapsed).
Trade Mark holders should remain vigilant for scams and other unsolicited correspondence seeking to profit from renewal of trade mark rights.
Such unscrupulous practices may include sending fraudulent or misleading ‘invoices’ or offers to the holder to renew, publish or register their trade marks.
Where payment or further action is requested, the trade mark holder should always seek advice to confirm the legitimacy of the request before responding or processing payment.
The official renewal channel for Madrid Protocol International Registrations is WIPO or via the trade mark holder’s appointed representative.
Trade mark holders are also encouraged to formally appoint a representative (such as Mirai Legal) to manage their international trade mark portfolio.