International Patent Protection News From BSA Law

Top Quote From the Thai intellectual property protection desk at BSA Law: Thailand's patent protection laws recognize the legality of foreign trademarks but patent and copyright protection for works created abroad are subject to the country's international membership and agreements. End Quote
  • (1888PressRelease) May 08, 2017 - Thailand's legal system has more than 100 years of history enforcing copyright protection. Over the years, protection has expanded to other intellectual properties, with international agreements or cooperation determining the specifics of protection.

    As a foundational step, businesses can first categorize their IP assets into patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets. In collaboration with a Thai IP law firm, registration/application, validity and enforcement can be planned and implemented.

    Here is a look at the key aspects of IP protection for patents, trademarks and copyrights.

    While Thai IP law does not require the registration of trademark, it is advised to ensure protection against infringement and avoid infringing on others' trademark. Lawful registration requires businesses or their applicants to maintain a fixed business location or address in Thailand. In some circumstances, Thai law recognizes the legality of foreign trademarks, though only limited protection is provided. Thailand is not currently a party to any international convention that provides reciprocal enforcement in relation to trademarks. Businesses need to register locally to guarantee the protection of their rights in Thailand.

    Thai Patent Act stipulates that the entity that has been granted an invention patent has the sole rights to produce, sell, use, offer for sale, or import patented products into Thailand. Thai patent protection applies an 'absolute novelty standard' wherein prior use of prior publication in any country may be used to determine if the invention is known widely. Thai nationals or residents, World Trade Organization (WTO) member states or states that allow Thai nationals to apply for patents, are eligible to apply for patents in Thailand.

    Also, though Thai law does not formally recognize foreign patents, as a member of the WTO, the country must oblige with the provisions of the trade-related aspects of IP rights (TRIPs). So, businesses can claim priority when their patent file is filed in a foreign country bound by TRIPs provided that the patent is filed within 12 months or six months for an invention or a design respectively.

    Copyrights for works created abroad are eligible for protection in Thailand as long as the country in question is one among the 172 signatory countries in the world today, or bound by TRIPs owing to their WTO membership status. Rights to copyright protection in Thailand can only be enforced if businesses record their copyright with the Intellectual Property Department.

    There have been many attempts by legislators to modernize Thai copyright law. In 2014, two copyright bills were passed into law. One of the amendments under Section 32/3 entitles owners of copyrighted works to seek preliminary injunctive relief against the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted works residing in computer systems. Copyright owners who have evidence suggesting the infringement in the computer system of a service provider can file a motion in court for an order against the service provider to halt such infringement.

    For guidance and use of legal action on Thai and international copyright, patent and trademark protection, businesses can consult BSA Law.

    About BSA Law:
    For over 30 years, Bamrung Suvicha Apisakdi Law Associates (BSA Law) has focused on providing reliable legal advice and services to the Thai and foreign business community in Thailand. BSA Law seeks to provide international standards of legal services while retaining the customs of the Thai business culture.

    For more information please contact:

    Jim Byrne
    Business Advisor, BSA Law.
    Email: jim ( @ ) bsalaw dot co dot th

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