I. General

1. What is a trademark?

A trademark is a sign capable of distinguishing its goods or services from the goods or services of another enterprise. Trademarks can be words, images or a combination of elements that are expressed in one or more colors.

What types of trademarks can be registered in Laos?

You can register trademarks for goods, service marks, or collective marks in Laos.

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What signs are not registered as trademarks in Laos?

Signs that can not be registered are trademarks including:

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- Signs are not distinguishable;
- The sign has become the common name of the product in the commercial in common language;
- Signs likely to deceive the public or business of the origin, nature and characteristics of the goods or services;
- Signs contrary to social morality and public order;
- Signs of duplication, or copy or contain elements similar to the national emblem, national flag, cultural symbol, national historical symbol, name or initials of the state, intergovernmental organizations or International organizations;
- Signs similar or identical with the quality mark, quantity, type indication of origin or origin, or stamp of any state or international organization, except allowed by country or international organization respectively;
- Signs of duplication or similar confusion with well-known trademarks or trade names.
What is the "first filing" principle?
In cases where two or more persons file the same or similar registration application for the same product group, the first applicant shall be accepted by the registration office in Laos.
Can I file a trademark application in Laos under the Madrid Agreement?
NO. Laos is not a member of the Madrid Agreement, so you must file a trademark application in Laos by the way of applying for a national registration, ie. applying directly to the Organization of Science, Technology and Environment in Lao.
Do you need to apply for a trademark registration in Laos through a representative?

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YES. Foreign individuals and entities that wish to register trademarks in Laos need to file their applications through a representative who is legally registered in Laos. The applicant must file a letter of authority appointing a representative on his/her behalf to process the application.
II. APPLICATION PROCEDURE
Who has the right to file trademark applications in Laos?
Any individual or legal entity that engages in the production and trading of goods and services lawfully has the right to trademark registration in Laos.
If the mark applied for multiple groups of products or services, how many dossiers should be submitted?
An application for registration of a trademark in Laos is only for a group of product or service. As a result, if the label is used for more than one product or service group, you must file multiple independent applications for each product or service group.
What documents and information do you need to provide?
Documents to submit
- Authorization letter of the applicant, notarized (required to be submitted at the same time with the application, copies accepted at the time of submission of the application, provided that the original must be filed within 60 days from the filing date)
- 15 samples of the trademark (not less than 5 x 5 cm and not larger than 9 x 9 cm) submitted simultaneously with the application;

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- A copy of the priority application enclosed with an English translation if the application is not made in English, or the Certificate of Exhibit (applicable in the case of an application for the Paris Convention) with the Application;
- The notarized copy of the regulation on the use of the mark (if the mark applied for registration is a collective mark - submitted simultaneously with the application).
Information
- Full name, address, telephone number, fax number and nationality of the applicant;
- Description of the mark including the meaning of the mark, the color of the request for protection, the translation of the character into Latin (if necessary).
- List of goods and/or services bearing the mark;
- International Classification of Goods and Services (if known)
How much does it cost to register a trademark?

The trademark registration fee in Laos is USD 300 for a brand/group of goods or services. This fee includes both national fees and service charges.

How is the application processed, how long is the registration period?

Once filed, the trademark application will be tested on the form. If the requirements of the above documents and information are satisfied, the application will be transferred to the content examination. Specifically, whether the mark is distinguishable or not; is likely to confuse the public or business community about the geographical origin, nature and characteristics of the product or service; have similar or misleading duplicates of pre-registered trademarks or well-known trademarks. If the mark meets the criteria for protection, the registry will issue a certificate of registration of the mark. The registration period is 6 - 7 months from the filing date if no dispute arises.
III. DURATION OF PROTECTION AND EXTENSION TIME LIMIT FOR REGISTRATION OF BRANDS
What is the duration of protection of trademark in Laos?
Once registered, the mark is protected for 10 years from the filing date. The period of validity of the trademark is extended several times continuously, each time 10 years.
When do I need to file an extension of trademark validity?
Generally, you should apply for an extension of the validity of a trademark within a few months before the mark expires. An application for extension of validity of trademark protection may be filed within 6 months from the expiry date (together with an explanation of late submission). If after this time limit the application for extension is not submitted, the registered trademark will be invalidated.
Documents necessary for the renewal of the mark
- Authorization letter of the applicant, notarized (required to be submitted at the same time with the application, copies accepted at the time of submission of the application, provided that the original must be filed within 60 days from the filing date) The
- A copy of the Certificate of Trademark Registration (required to be submitted at the same time)
- 20 registered trademarks (required to be submitted at the same time).
What is the use of a trademark in Laos?
Registered trademarks are only considered to be used in Laos when the trademark owner, or the person authorized by the trademark owner (the licensee) sells or legally supplies the goods or services which bear the trademarks in Laos (Trademarked goods illegally imported into Laos are not considered trademarks).
Can registered trademarks be canceled and on which basis?
If there are grounds to believe that you have not used the trademark or allowed another person to use the trademark for five consecutive years from the date the registered trademark was revoked on the basis of a request from a third party, on the grounds that the trademark owner does not use, or does not allow others to use, his or her registered trademark for five consecutive years from the date on which the trademark was registered without good reason. not using that.
Is it possible to amend information related to a registered trademark?
YES. If the name and address of the owner are to be changed, the trademark owner shall carry out procedures for recording the amendment related to the registered mark at the registry.
How to transfer trademark in Laos?
During the validity of the mark, the trademark owner may transfer the industrial property right to the mark to the third party. Trademark transfer contracts must be made in writing and registered with the competent authorities in Laos for legal effect.
Documents required for the registration of the transfer contract:
- Letter of authority of the applicant, notarized (required to be submitted simultaneously with the application, provided that the original must be filed within 60 days from the filing date).
- The original, or notarized copy of the transfer contract, enclosed with the appendix (if any). If the contract is not made in English, it must be accompanied by an English translation of the original translation (submitted at the same time as the application);
- Original Certificate of Trademark Registration (submitted at the same time).
How to transfer the right to use trademark in Laos?
During the validity of the mark, the trademark owner may transfer the right to use the mark to a third party through a license agreement. Licensing contracts must be in writing and registered with the competent authority in Laos for the new law to take effect.
Documentation needed for the registration of the license:
- Authorization letter of the applicant, notarized (required to be submitted at the same time with the application, copies accepted at the time of submission of the application, provided that the original must be filed within 60 days from the filing date) The
- The original, or notarized copy of the License Agreement, if any. If the contract is not made in English, it must be accompanied by an English translation certifying the translation to the original (submitted simultaneously with the application);
- A notarized copy of the Trademark Registration Certificate (submitted at the same time).
IV. ENFORCE RIGHTS
What rights do trademark owners have?
The trademark owner has the right:
- Exclusively using the mark or allowing others to use the mark within the territory of the Lao People's Democratic Republic;
- Initiate a lawsuit against the offender.

What behavior is considered trademark infringement in Laos?

All acts of using a registered trademark without the consent of the owner (other than those permitted by law without permission of the owner) shall be deemed to be violation of the rights of the trademark owner and will be dealt with under the laws of the Lao People's Democratic Republic.

Translated from: Đăng ký bảo hộ nhãn hiệu tại Lào

For more information, please contact: MINH KHUE LAW FIRM CO., LTD

Add: Room 2007, 20th Floor, C2 Building, Vincom Tran Duy Hung, Tran Duy Hung Street, Trung Hoa Ward, Cau Giay District, Hanoi.

Consult and request for Intellectual Property protection service 24/7, call 1900.6162

Email: [email protected]

Look forward to cooperation with clients!

Best regards./.

Intellectual Property Department - Minh Khue Law Firm

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