Designs Cancellation & Infringement
Tanzania Lawyers for Design Cancellations and Infringement
Our intellectual property attorneys regularly represent clients on both sides of disputes regarding ownership of protected designs – including proceedings for cancellation and infringement. If you need legal representation for a design-related dispute, we can assist you in protecting and enforcing your legal rights.
Seeking Cancellation of Design Registrations in Tanzania
In Tanzania, design owners can obtain protection through registration with the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO). There are currently no local procedures for design registration. Accordingly, parties seeking cancellation of a design registration must initiate cancellation proceedings with ARIPO. In Zanzibar, design cancellation procedure is prescribed under the Zanzibar Industrial Property Act, 2008 and the Industrial Property Regulations, 2014.
There are three primary grounds to seek cancellation of a design registration:
- A design was not new when registered,
- A design does not have individual character, or
- The design was not otherwise eligible for registration.
At Lexglobe LLP, we provide representation for interested parties in cancellation proceedings at ARIPO. Whether you need to protect your registration or you need to seek cancellation of a third-party registration, we can assist you in enforcing your international intellectual property rights.
Enforcing Design Rights in Instances of Infringement
What Constitutes Infringement?
Design owners enjoy a number of exclusive rights, which they have the ability to exercise and commercialize either directly or indirectly through licensing or assignment. A third party’s exercise of these exclusive rights without appropriate authority may constitute infringement. This can include making, selling or importing articles that incorporate a protected design without the right holder’s consent. Whether a particular use is infringing will be determined by examining the features affecting the appearance of the product in question in comparison to any photographs, drawings or other graphical representations deposited in the Design Register (subject to any disclaimers).
An important caveat is the “right of prior use.” An unauthorized use does not constitute infringement if the user was, in good faith, using the design either (i) as of the priority date of the registration, or (ii) during a lapse in registration. However, prior use rights are limited, and it is possible for a prior user to exceed the scope of non-infringing use.
Similar to copyright, an exception also exists for personal, non-economic use.
What are the Remedies for Design Infringement?
In cases of infringement, design owners can seek to enforce their rights in the High Court of Tanzania. Possible remedies include:
- A declaration that the owner is entitled to protection,
- Tort damages, and/or
- If the design owner has a contractual relationship with the infringer, damages for breach of contract.
Contact Lexglobe LLP | Industrial Design Lawyers in Tanzania
If you need to seek cancellation of a third-party design registration, if another party is seeking to cancel your registration or if you need legal representation for design infringement claim in Tanzania, the intellectual property lawyers at Lexglobe LLP can help. To schedule an appointment, call our offices at 255 22 212 4127 or request to speak with an attorney online today.