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THE IMPORTANCE OF THE RENEWAL OF DISTINCTIVE SIGNS

In order to ensure a dynamic and flexible Intellectual Property legal system, which allows the entry of new participants to the market with their respective distinctive signs (trademarks, slogans, commercial names, logos, etc.), which logically have not yet existed in the market, the Colombian government has established a term of ten years from the date of granting the registration of the industrial asset, for the owner of the registered distinctive signs to dispose of them in the market either by using them directly, licensing their use or selling them.
After the expiration of this term, the concession that granted the registration of the distinctive sign will expire and the holder will lose the right that had been granted on the exploitation of those intangible assets, especially the trademark, which is the sign that has been considered as the most relevant within a company and that serves to provide identity, reputation and a certain level of quality to its products or services and therefore can become the most important asset of a company, which can be lost by a simple carelessness in the management of the industrial property assets of our company, reputation and a certain level of quality to its products or services and therefore can become the most important asset of a company, which can be lost by a simple oversight in the management of the industrial property assets of our company.
The law has established a term of six months prior to the expiration of the ten-year term, to request the renewal of the registration, although in practice a grace period of six months after the expiration has been granted for those who forgot to make their renewal request, provided that no additional registration requests have been made, likewise, it must be expressly requested to the Superintendence of Industry and Commerce who will evaluate whether or not to grant the extemporaneous request for renewal of the registration.
Recall that the study of the renewal of trademark registration has a cost and that the mere application within the stipulated term does not oblige the Superintendence of Industry and Commerce to grant the concession for another ten years, since it must carry out a formal and substantive study of the application and proceed with the renewal, this formal and substantive study process is tied to legal fees for the year 2019 of $503,000 pesos for a single class and $688,000 pesos if the application is made extemporaneously, that is during the grace period.
In conclusion, it is important to highlight that Colombian companies must have an effective system for the management of Industrial Property and Copyright assets, understanding that, by an omission, carelessness or forgetfulness, valuable assets can be lost and other competitors will manage to take possession of these goods and enjoy the positioning achieved in the specific market or at least eliminate the legal protection that they had during the concession.
 
Author: Francisco Ospina Vargas
Publisher: Santiago Pinzon Sosa

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