Worldwide Patent and Trademark Office Updates in Response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic

This is a collection of worldwide patent and trademark office updates made in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information or for related questions regarding how the current healthcare crisis is impacting patent, trademark and general IP practice in the United States and around the globe, please contact any of the lawyers listed on this page. (Although we regularly check for updates from all patent and trademark offices, this is a rapidly changing environment. We suggest that you check the website of a particular office of interest for confirmation of the details outlined here or for further direction. No actions should be taken in reliance on the information posted here without confirming with counsel.)

  • Argentina

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    Argentina

    The National Institute of Industrial Property (INPI) extended all deadlines running from March 13, 2020 to April 27, 2020. However, the memorandum is somewhat ambiguous as to whether these extensions shall apply to Paris Convention priority terms, i.e. six months for trademarks and designs and one year for patents and utility models.

  • Australia

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    Australia

    IP Australia has extended the deadline for requesting extensions of time in patent, trademark and design applications until October 31, 2020.

    View the Australian government’s IP Australia website.

  • Austria

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    Austria

    All existing official time limits in proceedings will be extended two months without the need to apply for a further extension separately. For deadlines concerning the submission of a reply in bilateral proceedings (e.g. trademark revocation proceedings and opposition) a request for extension of the deadline must be submitted. According to the current legal situation, the request must be granted without further proceedings in these proceedings if the deadline for the submission of a reply expires unused. Other deadlines resulting directly from the law (e.g. for filing appeals or for paying annuity and renewal fees) cannot be extended.

    View Austria's Patent Office website.

  • Benelux

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    Benelux

    Current deadlines are postponed. From now until the end of the imposed public restrictions in the Benelux countries, Benelux Office for Intellectual Property (BOIP) will not withdraw any requests or procedures because a given deadline has not been met. This also applies to opposition proceedings not submitted on time or payments not received on time. After this period has ended, an additional period of one month will be granted for all requests and proceedings for which the time limits have expired or which are less than one month at that time. This month will be counted from the moment that there are no longer any limitations in society in the Benelux countries. BOIP will set a date for this in due course by means of a new communication from the Director General.

    View the BOIP website.

  • Bolivia

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    Bolivia

    The Bolivian IP Office announced the suspension of the terms of administrative procedures in the field of Intellectual Property, Copyright and Related Rights until April 30, 2020.

  • Brazil

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    Brazil

    The Brazilian PTO announced that all deadlines are suspended from March 16, 2020 to May 31, 2020.
  • Canada

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    Canada

    All deadlines between March 16, 2020 and August 7, 2020 are extended to August 10, 2020.

    View the Canadian Intellectual Property Office website.

  • Colombia

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    Colombia

    All expiration dates for administrative IP processes such as oppositions, responses to them, publications in gazettes, payment of fees and other procedures regarding trademarks, patents and industrial designs were suspended between March 17, 2020 and March 31, 2020. In addition, terms for all jurisdictional processes, including processes for trademark infringement, unfair competition, and ongoing consumer protection actions, were suspended between March 17, 2020 and March 31, 2020. On April 1, 2020, deadlines and terms resumed.

  • Dominican Republic

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    Dominican Republic

    All deadlines are suspended indefinitely, until the government ends its state of emergency (currently scheduled for April 30, 2020). Once the state of emergency end, deadlines will be restored three days after. Suspended deadlines include filing appeals, actions, renewals, and payment of maintenance fees.

  • European Patent Office (EPO)

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    European Patent Office (EPO)

    Many (but not all) time limits expiring on or after March 15, 2020 are extended until June 2, 2020. The extensions and remedies apply to parties and representatives in proceedings under the EPC and the PCT. Not all terms have been automatically extended; for instance, the terms for filing a divisional application and a response in preparation of oral proceedings are not extended. Moreover, filing further applications claiming priority of an earlier application should be done within the original priority term in order to avoid the risk of losing the priority date in any jurisdictions.

    The EPO has announced that it will temporarily waive the additional fee when a renewal fee is paid late. This waiver will only be applicable from June 1, 2020, until August 31, 2020, with respect to European patent applications where a renewal fee has fallen due on or after March 15, 2020, and the renewal fee was not paid by the due date.

    View the European Patent Office website.

  • European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO)

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    European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO)

    All deadlines expiring between March 9, 2020 and May 17, 2020 are extended to May 18, 2020.

    View the European Union Intellectual Property Office website.

  • Germany

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    Germany

    Time limits on pending cases set by the German Patent and Trade Mark Office are extended until May 4, 2020.

    View the German Patent and Trade Mark Office website.

  • India

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    India

    India’s Supreme Court and Dehli High Court have ruled that all Indian Intellectual Property Office deadlines stand extended until further notice from the Supreme Court.
  • Ireland

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    Ireland

    The Intellectual Property Office of Ireland is closed through May 18, 2020. Any official office deadlines are extended to May 19, 2020.

    View the Intellectual Property Office of Ireland website.

  • Italy

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    Italy

    All terms relating to administrative proceedings, on the request of a party or office, pending or initiated after February 23, 2020 are suspended until May 15, 2020. IP rights expiring between January 31st and April 15th retain their validity until June 15th; after that date, it is up to the person concerned, who intends to extend the duration of an industrial property title, to activate using the forms already provided for by the law in order to achieve the maintenance in life or renewal of the right. Terms relating to appeals before the Board of Appeal are excluded from this suspension, as they relate to judicial proceedings and not to administrative ones.

    View the Italian Patent and Trademark Office website./a>.

  • Malaysia

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    Malaysia

    The Malaysian Intellectual Property Office is closed through April 28, 2020. The online filing system remains available for at least new applications. Manual filing at MyIPO’s office is not currently possible. Any matters and deadlines that cannot be dealt with by online filing may be validly filed manually once the office reopens.

  • Mexico

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    Mexico

    The Mexican Institute of Intellectual Property announced that it will reopen gradually and that all deadlines that fell from March 24, 2020 to July 13, 2020 will resume on July 13, 2020.
  • Paraguay

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    Paraguay

    The National Directorate of Intellectual Property has suspended its activities, official deadlines and electronic procedures until April 19, 2020.

  • Peru

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    Peru

    All deadlines expiring between March 16, 2020 and May 6, 2020 have been suspended.

  • Philippines

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    Philippines

    Deadlines of all papers, pleadings, documents, and payments falling due from March 16, 2020 to April 30, 2020 may be filed until June 30, 2020. Deadlines falling due from May 1, 2020 to June 30, 2020 may be filed until July 30, 2020. All hearings are suspended until May 22, 2020.

    View the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines website.

  • Russia

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    Russia

    The Russian president has declared the days from March 30, 2020 to May 11, 2020 as national non-working days. The Russian Patent and Trademark Office (Rospatent) has automatically extended all deadlines between March 30, 2020 and May 5, 2020 to May 6, 2020. However, there is no official confirmation from Rospatent about the extension of any deadlines after May 5, 2020.

  • Singapore

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    Singapore

    All filing deadlines for those required to respond between April 7, 2020 and June 4, 2020 inclusive are extended to June 5, 2020. This also applies to cases under its Hearings and Mediation Department.

    View the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore website.

  • South Korea

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    South Korea

    KIPO has announced an Official Notice to extend ex-officio designated official due dates. Such designated due dates that end on any date between March 31, 2020 and April 29, 2020, will be automatically extended up to April 30, 2020, even if no request for such extension of the term is filed. The due dates would be extended further to May 4, 2020, given that both April 30 and May 1, 2020 are national holidays and May 2 and 3, 2020 fall on a weekend. An additional announcement extended due dates coming due between April 30, 2020 and May 30, 2020 to May 31, 2020.

    The above-referenced due dates refer to the period during which KIPO allows the applicant to submit specific or missing documents or a response to an outstanding Non-Final Office Action. Such Non-Final Office Actions exclude Provisional Refusals issued against a Korean Designation of International Trademark Registration, but include provisional refusals based on an Opposition. However, due dates based on the statutory period in the Patent Act (Trademark Act, Design Act, etc.) and the period for a possible dispute between parties are excluded from the above-referenced ex-officio extension. For example, the deadlines for entering the national phase of a PCT application, filing a request for examination, and filing a response against a Final Office Action will not be automatically extended.

    View the KIPO website.

  • Spain

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    Spain

    The Spanish Patent & Trademark Office announced that it has suspended time limits indefinitely, until the government ends its state of emergency. Time limits and deadlines for pending court proceedings have also been suspended.

  • United Kingdom

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    United Kingdom

    All deadlines from March 24, 2020 to July 29, 2020 are extended to July 30, 2020.

    View the UK Intellectual Property Office website.

  • United States

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    United States

    Due dates for all major patent and trademark filings or payments that were due between, and inclusive of both, March 27, 2020 and May 31, 2020, will be considered timely if filed on or before June 1, 2020, provided that the filing is accompanied by a statement that the delay in filing or payment was due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

    Additionally, for small and micro entities only, patent filings that would have been deemed timely filed, if filed by June 1, 2020, will now be deemed timely filed if filed by July 1, 2020. For large entities, after May 31, 2020, relief will be available to those who need it on a case-by-case basis. Such requests can be submitted through a petition for an extension of time or a petition to revive. It also extended its waiver of the petition fee for filing a petition for the revival of applications that became abandoned on or before June 30, 2020, if accompanied by a statement that the delay in filing or payment was due to the COVID-19 outbreak. For trademark filings, the USPTO will direct relief to those who need it on a case-by-case basis. Get more information on patent filings.Get more information on trademark filings.

    A delay in filing or payment is due to the COVID-19 outbreak if a practitioner, applicant, patent owner, registrant, petitioner, third party requester, inventor, or other person associated with the filing or fee was personally affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, including, without limitation, through office closures, cash flow interruptions, inaccessibility of files or other materials, travel delays, personal or family illness, or similar circumstances, such that the outbreak materially interfered with timely filing or payment.

    All USPTO offices are closed to the public until further notice. Examiner and examining attorney interviews, Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) oral hearings, and other similar in-person meetings with parties and stakeholders scheduled to take place at USPTO offices on or after March 13, 2020 will be conducted remotely by video or telephone.

    On June 11, the USPTO announced that it will allow Petitions to restore the Right of Priority to or Benefit of a Prior-Filed Application, and waive the petition fee, for late-filed non-provisional applications claiming priority to provisional or foreign applications that should have been filed between March 27, 2020 and July 30, 2020 when accompanied by a statement that failure to timely file was due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

  • Vietnam

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    Vietnam

    Deadlines falling between March 30, 2020 and April 30, 2020 are automatically extended to May 30, 2020. Due dates for filing Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) requests are extended to May 4, 2020. The government is providing a temporary 50% discount, effective from May 29, 2020, until December 31, 2020, on certain IP fees.

    View the Intellectual Property Office of Vietnam website.