Slovenia Amends Industrial Property Act
On November 27, 2013, Slovenia adopted an amendment to the second paragraph of Article 67 of the Industrial Property Act regulating time frames for filing the request for continuation of proceedings after missing a deadline. The amendment came into force on December 21, 2013.
In accordance with the first paragraph of Article 67, the applicant, who has failed to comply with a time limit set out for the fulfillment of the obligations required in the proceedings for the acquisition of a right, may request that the non-observed time limit be deemed to have been complied with, that legal consequences of such non-observance be abolished, and that the Slovenian IPO continues the proceedings for the acquisition of the right. This legal remedy is different from restitutio in integrum as it can only be applied in the IP right application stage of the proceedings and not later on. At the same time, it is not limited only to cases where the applicant/holder has a justified and provable reason for missing a deadline, like in the case of restitutio in integrum. No reason for missing a deadline needs to be proven or even given.
The former version of the second paragraph of Article 67 stipulated that the request for continuation of proceedings had to be filed within two months after the applicant learned of the non-observance of the deadline or its legal consequences, while not setting any other deadline to file the request. In theory, this allowed the applicant to file a request for continuation of proceedings even years after missing the deadline.
In the interest of legal certainty, the amended law now sets the time limits to file the request for continuation of proceedings within two months after the cause for missing the deadline ceased to exist or within two months after the applicant learned that he missed the deadline. However, in no case can this request be filed later than six months after missing the original deadline.
By: Andrej Bukovnik
For more information, please contact Andrej Bukovnik at our Slovenia office.
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