FAQ on IP-Related Situation in Ukraine, Russia and Belarus

Mar 16 2022 - 11:08
Can one still file new applications and maintain existing rights in all three countries?
Are payments to Russia and Belarus allowed?
Yes, if they go through non-sanctioned banks. Anyway, no western bank will allow payments if they think they are in breach of sanctions.
Are PTOs of these countries still operational?
Yes. Even in Ukraine (Kyiv), the PTO did not interrupt operations, whereas they continue mostly online. The Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce and Industry announced that martial law was introduced in Ukraine on February 24, 2022 for the term of 30 days (on March 15 it was extended for another 30 days), and that due to force majeure circumstances, missed business-related deadlines can be extended or restored. So far, the Ukrainian PTO has not issued any clear instructions in this regard. We assume that any future regulations or directives will follow international practice, so it is safe to assume that any deadlines falling during the period when martial law is in force, shift to the date on which the martial law ends. The European Patent Office has issued a notice concerning the application of Rule 134(5) EPC under the circumstances.
What is happening with PETOSEVIC staff in these countries – are we working “normally”?
No, one cannot say that the work is going on “normally” for obvious reasons. Importantly, all our staff (many of them are in different countries now) continues to work every day, online, via our central servers, and all of them are safe – so far.
How does PETOSEVIC see the near future – IP wise?
As an EU based company, we are aligned with sanctions and will never advise to do anything that will break the new “code of conduct”, particularly towards Russia. We will continue to serve our clients where possible and until it is possible to do so without breaking the law
Are there reasons to stop prosecution and maintenance of IP rights in sanctioned countries?
Aside from purely political, we see no reasons that would be based on current applicable laws. After all, everything changes, so will the situation in this unfortunate region. One may well rather keep their IP rights for that moment, which will come hopefully sooner rather than later.
Is it true that Russia is “legalizing IP piracy”, “suspending IP rights of foreign companies” “cancelling liability for parallel imports” and alike?
No. This is superficial reporting and relates to previously existing rules on compulsory licenses and parallel imports. If you need details, please contact us.
Is it true that there is a new law in Russia that allows the government to list the goods in respect of which certain provisions of IP law may be waived?
Yes. Russian government has not used the law yet, and observers think that this may happen in extraordinary situations when shortage of certain goods on the Russian market occurs.

You will be regularly informed about further developments. For any questions, please contact operations@petosevic.com.
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