New Legislation on Customs Measures in Serbia

Sep 30 2015 - 14:19

A new decree on customs enforcement of intellectual property rights, modeled after the EU Regulation No. 608/2013, entered into effect in Serbia on September 1, 2015. This new decree was published in the Official Gazette No. 25 of March 13, 2015.

Under the decree, the trademark owner’s declaration of liability is incorporated in the Customs Watch Application and is no longer required as a separate document.

The new decree requires IP rights holders to provide more information on genuine goods, including technical information, distribution channels, etc. It remains to be seen how this will be applied in practice, as we have not yet filed any Customs Watch Application under the new regulation. However, at this point, the following additional information is required:

• Distinctive features of genuine goods (a scanned copy of presentation/guideline on counterfeits would also be useful, if available)
• Places of production
• Relevant companies – authorized importers/suppliers/manufacturers/consignees/exporters
• Authorized traders (name, address and registration numbers of persons or entities)

The new decree provides for a simplified procedure for the destruction of goods, without a court order, if the holder of the goods consents to the destruction (explicitly or tacitly) within a deadline of 10 working days (three working days for perishable goods) and if the IP rights holder confirms that the goods are counterfeit and requests their destruction within the same deadline. This deadline cannot be extended unless the IP rights holder decides to file a lawsuit. The old decree allowed for a deadline extension of 10 working days in both cases (request for destruction of the goods under the simplified procedure or lawsuit). Moreover, the deadline to request a Customs Watch in ex-officio cases is now four working days, rather than three.

An important novelty is the introduction of the “small consignments procedure”. Small consignments are postal or express courier consignments that contain three units or less or weigh less than two kilograms. However, as the customs authorities announced, dealing with small consignments requires certain technical adjustments that the Customs Administration has yet to implement, thus some delays are expected before this procedure is put into practice.

By: Ana Opalic, Ivan Matic

For more information, please contact Ana Opalic or Ivan Matic at our Serbia office.

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