On December the 18th 2014, the Act that governed Industrial Property in Morocco (Act No. 17/97) was amended by the new Industrial Property Law No. 23-13. This new Law came into full force on January the 15th 2015. This transition enhanced Industrial Property rights in Morocco in order to meet current international standards.
The main adjustments introduced into this new law include:
- Mandatory prior substantive examination for trademarks, designs and patent applications;
- Improved opposition procedure in which the term for issuing decisions has been reduced;
- Datation is now possible in order to allow the creator to record the date of the work’s creation to serve as recordal proof in case this becomes a concern in the future;
- Better regulation of Industrial Property professionals and practitioners;
- New enforcement measures that entitle the Customs administration to seize any suspected importing or exporting counterfeit goods, new penalty provisions for infringer, and the option of the IP owner to choose between criminal proceedings and civil action against the infringer;
- Possibility to file divisional applications for trademarks, patents, designs and models;
- Possibility to delay the disclosure of a design & model;
- Licensing and assignments are now allowed for pending applications;
- Micro-organism patents are now accepted.