NAFTA 2.0 and patents and trademarks

The new NAFTA agreement has some very interesting consequences for patents and trademarks.  

Here are the details.

The agreement requires Canada to join the Madrid Protocol by the date of entry into force of the new NAFTA agreement.  (The US and Mexico already belong;  it is recalled that Canada was already planning to join the Madrid Protocol.)  So the practical effect is this requires Canada to do something that Canada was planning to do anyway.

The agreement requires Canada and Mexico to join the Hague Agreement by the date of entry into force of the new NAFTA agreement.  (The US already belongs;  it is recalled that Canada has already deposited its instrument of accession to Hague Agreement and that its entry will take effect on November 5.  Mexico was already planning to join)  So the practical effect is that Mexico will have to join the Hague Agreement, which it was already planning to do anyway.

The agreement requires Canada and Mexico to join the Patent Law Treaty or, in the alternative, to make whatever changes to their national law would be required to bring about the functional equivalent thereof.

Oversimplifying it a bit, the chief features of the Patent Law Treaty are:

  • Availability of the Restoration of the Right of Priority procedure.
  • You don’t need a claim in the document to be entitled to a filing date.
  • You don’t need a filing fee to be entitled to a filing date.
  • For most bad things that might result in a loss of substantive rights, you get two months to correct the problem.

Alert listserv member Rick Neifeld spotted these very interesting aspects of the new NAFTA agreement.

One thought on “NAFTA 2.0 and patents and trademarks

  1. Canada also wants to join the Patent Law Treaty and legislation had been drafted to that effect a few years ago. Unfortunately, the new Patent Act articles and the new Patent Rules have never been officially adopted. I guess that this will force their adoption and Canada will then easily be able to join the Patent Law Treaty.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.