The Indian patent office resolves to settle over 200k trademark cases by 2025
The Controller General of Patents, Designs, and Trademarks (CGPDTM) vide a public notice dated August 01, 2022 has notified its special drive for resolution of IP disputes. Vide the said initiative, the Indian Patent Office has encouraged parties to amicably settle their pending trademark opposition and rectification disputes using alternate dispute resolution mechanisms. Further, the agency has also requested parties who have already settled their disputes to provide information for updating of Registry records. The said initiative aligns with the agency's submission before the Hon’ble High Court of Delhi last month, affirming that it is committed to settling over 200,000 trademark applications and oppositions by 2025.
The court had earlier issued notice to the agency seeking a status report on how it is intending to deal with the pending oppositions. In response to the said notice, the CGPDTM submitted that it has already chalked out a plan of action (POA) for fast-tracking disposal of pending trademark disputes.
Apart from the already initiated settlement drive, the CGPDTM informed the Court that the agency would be augmenting its present workforce of 12 Registrar level officers to 61 by the end of this year. Amongst the additional 49 new recruits, 30 officers are likely to join Trademark Registries in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, and Hyderabad. Moreover, the agency is also considering implementation of the Parliamentary Standing Committee’s proposal on reducing the time of filing trademark oppositions from four months to two months. This proposal, if implemented, will bring India at par with the trademark regime of nations such as Belgium, South Korea, Japan, etc.
The Hon’ble High Court, while noting the submissions of the CGPDTM has further recommended the agency to expedite the modes of communication used by the Trademark Registries using technology and encryption tools to ensure speedy compliances. The special settlement drive is a testimony to the agency’s commitment to restrengthen the Indian IP regime post the covid aftermath.
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