New Provisions of the Romanian Trademark Law
The provisions of the Romanian Trademark Law no. 84/1998 have changed recently, in order to make consistent the national legislation with the provisions of the European Parliament Directive no. 2008/95/CE dated October 22, 2008 .
The new law came into force in Romania on May 9 2010 (Law no. 66/2010 amending and supplementing Law no. 84/998 regarding trademarks and geographical indications, published in the Official Gazette no. 226/09.04.2010).
The law no. 66/2010 significantly amends the current trademark legislation. The registration procedure was changed and the new procedure is similar to the one provided by the Regulation regarding the registration of the community trademarks. Also, the official deadlines for filing oppositions and observations have been shortened.
The most important modification is that the Romanian Office for Patents and Trademarks (ROPTO) will no longer perform the fond examination and will not analyze the relative grounds of refusal during the registration of a new trademark application (the identity or the similarity with the previous registered or applied trademarks).
The trademark applications are published within seven days from the filing date and any interested person may file observations (for absolute grounds) and opposition (based on relative grounds of refusal) within 2 months from the publication date. Consequently, the Examination Commission from the Romanian Office for Patents and Trademarks (ROPTO) will analyze the relative grounds for refusal (such as the similarity or the identity with an earlier trademark) only in case an opposition is filed within the period of 2 months from the publication date.
After this period of time, the ROPTO will examine the trademark application only by analyzing the absolute grounds of refusal ( e.g. the lack of distinctiveness, common signs, trademarks that are contrary to morality or public order) in case no opposition is filed and will analyze also the relative grounds in case opposition are filed.
The entire examination procedure is shorter now and will last 6 months.
The Government adopted the Emergency Ordinance No. 13/2010 regarding certain measures to encourage creation of new jobs and reduction of unemployment in 2010
The Emergency Ordinance No. 13/2010 (referred to as O.U.G. No. 13/2010) was published in the Official Gazette, Part I, no. 136/01.03.2010 and applies to the year 2010.
This legal text was adopted on the recommendations of the European Union and International Labour Organisation and is aimed at countering the effects of economic and financial crisis on the labor market in Romania by helping create jobs and keep the concerns to minimize the incidence of unemployment.
According to the provisions of O.U.G. no.13/2010, the employers are excepted from paying social security contributions for a period of six months if they employ on the new created jobs people from among the unemployed and under record for employment agencies at least three months prior to the employment setting. Employers benefit from exemption from social security contributions only if the employment is maintained for a period of at least 12 months.
The term “social security contributions” is defined as meaning unemployment insurance contributions, social security contributions, insurance contributions for work accidents and occupational diseases, contribution to the Guarantee Fund for payment of wage claims, contribution to health insurance, including the contribution for leave and health insurance benefits.
If the employers do not comply with requirements of the O.U.G. no. 13/2010, the social benefits that were granted will be withdrawn, so employers are obliged to pay all amounts that they have been exempted from.
The period during which employers are exempted from social security contribution is considered as contribution period without the correspondent obligation for the employers to actually pay the contribution. This period is taken into account for determining the period of 24 months preceding the date of filing for granting the unemployment benefit by the unemployed people , as well as for the achievement of the minimum contribution period in the unemployment insurance system.
The provisions of the O.U.G. no. 13/2010 are duly completed with the provisions of Law no. 76/2002 regarding the unemployment insurance system and employment stimulation, with all the subsequent amendments.
Gabriela Milcev provided inputs for the Conference on Managing Intellectual Property, Ist Edition
On 18.10.2012 Gabriela Milcev presented “Ideas that could be protected and ideas that cannot be protected through intellectual property tools” as part of the Conference on Managing Intellectual Property, Ist Edition. The presentation was focused on the allegation that all ideas could be protected through different intellectual property tools depending on the materialization of the idea. Recent decisions related to trademarks, copyrights, design, unfair competition were also discussed. A special attention was paid to less original ideas though protected and also to objects protected through commercial secret.
Gabriela Milcev and Iulia Burbea provided inputs for the Conference on Technics and Methods of Communication, Negotiation and Mediation
On 07.11.2012 Gabriela Milcev sustained a presentation elaborated together with Iulia Burbea on “Mediation – compulsory, utility, necessity. Negotiation – provisions according with the New Civil Code”, as part of the Conference on Technics and Methods of Communication, Negotiation and Mediation. The presentation was focused on the mediation procedure taking into consideration the imminent application (2013, January) of the mediation legislation. The presentation aim was to underline the advantages and the necessity of the mediation in some cases. In-depth discussions arose from a case study where the audience participates actively. The presentation also contained a part that underlined the news related to the legislative provisions regarding negotiation in the light of the New Civil Code (October 1st, 2011). A special attention was paid to pre-agreement negotiation, post-agreement negotiation and the principle of goodwill in negotiation stage. The audience of the presentation was the law professionals as lawyers, judges, legal counsels, notaries and also entrepreneurial representatives.
Gabriela Milcev and Iulia Burbea provided inputs for the Managing Intellectual Property Conference, II-end Edition
On 15.02.2013 Gabriela Milcev sustained a presentation on “Characteristics of the signs in order to be protected by trademark”. The presentation held as part of Managing Intellectual Property Conference, II-end Edition, was elaborated together with Iulia Burbea and was a review of the conditions provided by the law to obtain registration from the distinctiveness and descriptiveness point of view, with a special focus on the European community practice. A lot of practical cases (from European and national courts) were presented for a better and complete understanding. A special attention was paid on the advantages and disadvantages of the strong trademarks versus weak trademarks and also to attempts and tendencies to register descriptive trademarks. The presentation was followed by significant discussions and questions from the audience. The conference was addressed both to the law professionals, lawyers, judges, legal counsels, notaries and entrepreneurial environment.
Iulia Burbea conferencing on “Invention during a labor contract – new provisions and practical contractual consequences”
On November 20, 2014 the Romanian National Chamber of Industrial Property Attorneys and Legal Magazine organized the conference “The new law regarding inventions during a labor contract. Judicial technical expertise”. Iulia explained the major consequences of the new provisions on the contractual relation of the employee with the employer. One of the main changes brought by the Law no.83/2014 is that for the first time according to the Romanian legislation the spontaneous invention belongs now to the employer if he claims the invention. The legal consequences of this new provision were analyzed in detail also from the perspective of the financial contractual relationships of the parties. Iulia’s speech was followed by interesting debates with the participants (IP attorneys, lawyers, judges, in-house lawyers).