Malta Intellectual Property, Trademarks and Patent Registration
The world of intellectual property stands apart from other legal institutions. The primary markets consist in patents, trademarks, designs, and copyright. As the term implies, all these rights are intellectual in nature and are indeed intangible. The above subcategories are the result of a long traditional search for a balance between the rights in the public domain and the rights granted to their creators as a form of incentive to reveal their creation or invention and continue to pursue such ventures.
Our setup is geared to handle all areas related to intellectual property including research, application, matters of opposition, law enforcement within the law courts, as well as validations, renewals and registrations of supplementary protection certificates.
We understand the importance of such intellectual property rights and their increasing relevance in modern societies. Whether our clients desire to register intellectual property rights or license these rights, or sell the rights attached to them, or whether our clients own copyright over some artistic works or creation, our advocates enjoy the requisite experience to lead and represent them in a professional and proper manner.
TRADEMARKS Registration in MAlta and in the EU
The purpose of a trademark is to distinguish the goods or services of one business from those of another business. Trademarks are generally used to identify a particular manufacturer, brand or product, as well as the reputation and goodwill associated with said goods or services. Following the recent trademark law amendments, a trademark may consist of verbal, figurative, sound, multimedia, motion, hologram amongst other types of marks.
We are able to assist you with searches, applications and registrations of trademarks with the Maltese Intellectual Property Office and the European Union Intellectual Property (EUIPO). Moreover, we can also assist you with maintaining your rights after during and after registration mainly assistance with any opposition proceedings that you may face, registering any transfers, restrictions, alterations or limitation. Once registered, trademarks are valid for a period of 10 years which may be renewed for further periods of 10 years indefinitely. In this respect, we may also assist you with any renewal applications that may need to be filed.
Establishing a trademark at the early days of your business is essential in order to ensure that all branding is not in conflict with any other registrations.
Patent Registration in Malta
If you are the creator of an invention and wish to benefit from that creativity, a patent will grant you the right to prevent others from replicating your ideas. Should anyone infringe your patent, you are then able to take legal action and seek damages. The Patents Act regulates the registration and safeguard of patents at a national level in Malta. This Act is based on European guidelines and has updated and replaced any previous legislation within this field.
Design registration in Malta and in the EU
Design protection is regulated under the Patents and Designs Act. A design can be protected if it is new and it has individual character. It will be considered as new if no identical design has been made available to the public before the date of filling of the application for registration. On the other hand, a design is considered to have an individual character if the overall impression it produces on the informed user differs from the overall impression produced by any other design. In most cases, registration may be refused if a design is identical to a prior design, if it is purely functional or if the design is found to be contrary to public policy or to accepted principles of morality.
Such as the case for trademarks, we are also able to assist you with searches, applications, and renewals. Once registered, a design is protected for a period of 5 years from the date of filling of the application which may be further renewed for further periods of 5 years for up to a total of 25 years from the date of filling.
Copyright Registration in Malta
Original works which are eligible for copyright protection include literary, artistic, audio-visual and musical works. For works to be protected these must be original and duly written or recorded since ideas are not granted copyright protection. Contrary to other areas of intellectual property, you do not need to register your copyright as protection is automatically granted if all the requirements established by law are satisfied.
Works are afforded copyright protection for 70 years after the end of the year following which the author passes away. Performers’ rights, producers’ rights, audio-visual works have a duration of 50 years from the end of the year in which the work was first made public.
We, at Valletta Services, can help you protect and enforce your copyrights material.
Intellectual property Holding Companies
We also offer the service of Intellectual Property Holding Companies (IP Holding Companies). Clients that enjoy large ownership of IP assets can opt to incorporate an IP Holding Company in the Maltese jurisdiction and channel the international income through Malta. With the proper guidance, they may greatly reduce what could be unnecessary tax bills.
The following are a more detailed list of other services offered by Valletta Services in the field of IP Law:
- Collecting Rights Societies
- European Patents
- Intellectual Property Licensing
- International Intellectual Property Advice
- Neighbouring Rights Issues
- Non-circumvention Agreements
- Non-disclosure Agreements
- Public Performance Agreements
- Royalty Structures
- Trade Secrets
- Contact Person