Overview 2017

As dawn breaks on the New Year 2018, H&H IP LAW wishes to express its satisfaction with its significant accomplishments throughout 2017 as it is eager to share them with their loyal partners.

Key dates

3/5 April 2017: Training sessions

As happens every year, H&H IP LAW holds training sessions on behalf of their clients (Brand holders) under the theme «Fight against counterfeiting – means of detection of counterfeit goods » organized in favor of customs officers (more than 300 customs officers) operating in the major ports in Morocco (Casablanca and Tangier cities).

April 24th, 2017: Protection of industrial property rights in Africa

We inform you that « H&H IP LAW » has teamed up with an international IP Law Firm through its African branch, for the purpose of providing their complementary expertise in the field of Industrial Property at the service of Moroccan and foreign companies and investors wishing to engage in the development of the African continent, to which Morocco is a stakeholder.

On this occasion, we inform you that this partnership was concretized on April 24, 2017 in Casablanca city at a ceremony/conference, in the presence of several key figures from different fields: economic, legal, and social, responding to the Invitation of the founders of the two firms, who presented their strategic visions, regarding the Protection of Industrial Property Rights in Africa, under the theme: « Industrial Property, a leverage for Investment in Africa ».

May 2017: Inclusion on TrombinojurisMaroc

We inform you that « H&H IP LAW » is now included in the reputable firms list of “TrombinojurisMaroc” directory. It’s a highly regarded website listing the prestigious Moroccan and African Law Firms. To check our profile, please click on the following link: https://www.trombinojuris.com/annuaire/show/list/1603012/1.

May 20th, 2017: Participation in INTA 2017

For the 5th consecutive year, « H&H IP LAW » has attended the 139th International Trademark Association (INTA) Annual Meeting, held in Barcelona. This event is the first event of the trademark’s community for networking, continuous training in the legal field for Brand Owners/Agent and interprofessional exchanges on industrial property.

October 1st,2017: OMPIC online transactions processing

Further to the implementation of an online filing platform by OMPIC (he Moroccan Industrial and Commercial Property Office), the majority of transactions made with the latter, which were previously operated via a physical deposit of documents, are now processed on online through our firm namely: Trademarks (Filing, Renewal, and Opposition), Designs(Filing and Renewal) and Patents (Payment of Annuities).

However, for encouraging the use of this platform, the OMPIC’s has reduced tariffs with respect to online transactions, in order to optimize costs on behalf of our clients; we favor online deposit transactions processing.

October 5 and 6, 2017 : Participation in Les Rencontres Africa 2017 in Tunis

The Africa Meetings are intended to constitute the major business meeting for African and French companies. In 2017, in a spirit of reciprocity, they were organized in Africa. They intend to contribute, concretely and effectively, to the strengthening of partnerships of all kinds between French and African companies.

Therefore, H&H IP LAW participated in this event by setting up a stand, in which we presented our services in Morocco and Africa, by exchanging with representatives of companies and rights holders for the protection of these latters in Africa.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY IN MOROCCO DURING COVID-19 (UPDATES AND RECOMMANDATIONS)

In this period of confinement and very legitimate questions about the legal implications related to the protection of Intellectual Property Titles in Morocco coinciding with the spread of COVID 19, H&H IP LAW decided to draw up this information note in order to update you about the specific measures taken by our firm as well as by the various institutions having a direct link with our field of action, namely the Moroccan Industrial Property Office (OMPIC) and the courts and this following the declaration of the state of health emergency in Morocco in order to contain the propagation of the pandemic of Coronavirus (Covid-19) decreed on 23-03-2020 for the first period from March 20, 2020 to April 20, 2020 at 6 p.m., then extended, by decree dated April 18, 2020 for a second period from April 20, 2020 to May 20, 2020, at 6 p.m. (Except extension).

Measures taken by our Firm H&H IP LAW

In order to preserve the individual health of our employees and their loved ones, H&H IP LAW has decided to limit the travel of its employees to the office as much as possible until further notice. In addition, in order to be able to guarantee the continuity of our services while maintaining the same quality, we have implemented a remote working protocol that guarantees the quality of work, data security, and confidentiality without interrupting activities. 

In addition and in a spirit of solidarity, the H&H IP LAW firm took the following decisions: 

  • Support and accompaniment of the holders of innovative projects: This initiative concerns the holders of an invention (physical or legal persons considered as VSEs / SMEs), having as objective the direct management of the COVID-19 pandemic and bearing an aspect in the public interest: Support for the registration and management of the related property title (Trademarks / Industrial models / Patents for invention), with the responsible administration (OMPIC), and this free of charge (Professional fees) ;
  • The application of a 5% discount on our professional fees: This offer concerns new customers in order to encourage them to protect their intangible assets during the period of the state of a health emergency.

Measures taken by the Moroccan TMO (OMPIC)

By a briefing note dated 28-03-2020, the Moroccan Office of Industrial and Commercial Property – OMPIC decided to apply the provisions of article 6 of the legislative decree, decreeing a state of health emergency in Morocco , by the suspension of all the deadlines provided for acts and operations with the said Office and which are governed by law 17-97 on the protection of industrial and commercial property in Morocco and this from March 24, 2020.

Thus, the aforementioned deadlines will resume from the day following the lifting of the state of health emergency, in accordance with the provisions of article 6 of the said decree-law (May 20, 2020, at 6 p.m. – Except extension).

However, the same note indicates that this suspension of time limits does not apply to the time limits provided for in international industrial property conventions and treaties ratified by the Kingdom of Morocco.

That said, we bring to your attention that, for the sake of good management of IP titles and in order to avoid any omission in the future to carry out an act, it is always possible to carry out all operations, with the TMO (OMPIC), according to the initial deadlines. Since OMPIC has not declared any interruption of its services, but calls on users to avoid travel by using online services which currently concern all operations without exception.

Courts/Judicial procedures

By decree-law on the state of health emergency and its application to the various institutions, it was decided to suspend all legal and regulatory deadlines, as provided in article 6 of said decree-law. Legal deadlines are understood to mean, inter alia, the deadlines for appeal procedures (appeal, cassation appeal, etc.).

This provision implies that the said deadlines will stop running during the state of emergency and resume the day after its lifting, according to the provisions of article 6 of the said decree-law (May 20, 2020, at 6 p.m. – Except extension).

In addition, the same article 6 specifies the cases of exceptions and which concern: the delays on appeal concerning persons prosecuted in detention, as well as the periods of placement in police custody and preventive detention.

Recommendations of our firm during the containment period

– Check the intellectual Property portfolio;
– Maintain any eventual filing application for protection purposes;
– Prepare the extension of the activity abroad by conducting the necessary registrations;
– Maintain anti-competitive intelligence (The focus on e-commerce of counterfeit products and cybersquatting);
– review the contracts established with distributors or suppliers and renegotiate the terms of said contracts, if necessary, in order to adapt them to the current situation;
– Take advantage of the free time to develop the business and expand your IP title portfolios.

Accordingly, we bring to your kind attention that our team will be pleased to assist you on the various aforementioned subjects. This said, kindly do not hesitate to contact us for more information and/or clarification at the following e-mail address: info@hnh-iplaw.com

Furthermore, we bring to your attention that by order of the head of government, it was decided to return to the GMT time zone in Morocco, from April 19, 2020 at 3:00 a.m. until May 31, 2020 at 2:00 a.m. and this coincides with the holy month of Ramadan scheduled for the weekend.

Finally, H&H IP LAW wishes to express its deep solidarity to those directly and indirectly affected by the epidemic.