31 August 2015
Legal alert: Ukraine: Trademarks Searches Are Free Almost

On August 21, 2015, the Ukrainian Patent Office granted free access to its on-line database of pending trademarks applications atwww.base.uipv.org.

KEY CHANGES

Free searches

The database provides quite detailed information on an application, including trademark image, list of goods/services, filing date, applicant’s name and address, etc.

  • All these data are easily searchable by tools suggested by the database.
  • The search is also possible in English, although results will appear in Ukrainian.
  • The database is supposed to be updated on a daily basis.
  • Having identified necessary trademark application you can also find out stage of its review by the Patent office, including provisional refusals, etc.

Paid searches still necessary, sometimes

As it should be expected, there is a number of limitations on the database use.

  • Probably the most significant one is that the access is granted to applications accepted by the Patent office since August 20, 2015 only.
  • Having said that it should be mentioned that on-line search for the already registered trademarks in fact works for those only granted since about April 2006.
  • So, if you are looking for a trademark application filed before August 20, 2015 or for a trademark registered before April 2006, you still should apply for a paid search.
  • Also you would hardly find a trademark if you are searching not for word, but for image sign – in this regard searching tools are quite limited.

What’s for business

Nevertheless, the free access is a great step forward for enhancing protection of IP assets in Ukraine.

  • From now on, business will be able to monitor/track competitors’ new trademark applications in a timely and cost effective manner.
  • There will be more chances preventing infringing registrations avoiding costly court invalidation procedures.
  • For industries with a high branding level like pharmaceuticals, FMCG, consumer electronics, etc. it may make sense to instruct its local counsel for say quarterly based searches for new trademark applications, which are now available finally.
 

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