The Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) announced a
major revision of the South Korean Trademark Act which was recently approved by
the National Assembly and will enter into force on 1 September 2016. According
to information provided by KIPO, it is the most comprehensive revision of the
trademark law since 1990.
The new provisions include, among many others, the
Legal standing no longer necessary to file a
request for cancellation due to non-use of the trademark. Up to now, a party
requesting cancellation due to the non-use of the trademark had to prove that
he/she is doing business in the same field as the trade mark owner or that
he/she is owning an application which is similar to the challenged trade mark.
By eliminating these conditions, the law revision will make it easier for third
parties to challenge unused marks.
Electronic use of trademarks accepted: According to the revised law, also the
electronic use such as e.g. in e-commerce or other electronic services will be recognised
as one of the possible types of trade mark use
Elimination of the one year period during which
registration of a new mark similar to an expunged mark is not permitted: According to the revised law, applicants no
longer have to wait until the end of this period to submit their application
for a desired trademark.
A comprehensive overview on all new provisions of the
Trademark Act is available on KIPO's
website (at the time of publishing this item only in Korean - open the pdf files related to the entry of 11