Changes to the Trade-marks Act

August 28th, 2014

On June 19, 2014 the Canadian government ratified a bill which will modernize our current Trade-marks Act, and with it comes sweeping changes to the methods and processes behind trademark registration and enforcement.  While the bill received royal assent, changes are not yet in force until the regulations are finalized, which are anticipated sometime in 2015.

trademark changes

Here is a summary of some of the major changes and what I believe might be their effect:

Overall, the changes are welcome and will serve to bring the Canadian registration process and laws in line with many other countries.  What is clear is that the costs for applicants may increase, due to shortened lifespans, the possibility of a per-class registration cost, and the potential of true owners of unregistered brands having to expend resources and money to cancel or defend against trademark squatters.  Applicants concerned with these changes should act soon.

For more information, contact me.

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