Argentina: Mediation will no longer suspend the one-year term to settle trademark oppositions

by Ignacio Sánchez Echagüe (Marval, O’Farrell & Mairal, Argentina)

In Argentina the prosecution of trademark applications is blocked automatically when an opposition is filed, and the applicant has a one-year term counted from notification of the opposition – to negotiate the withdrawal of the opposition with the opponent. In the absence of a settlement, the applicant has to file a lawsuit in court seeking dismissal of the opposition to avoid the application lapsing.

Prior to this new law, mediation suspended the one-year term until the proceedings were closed, with or without a settlement. Such provision resulted in a de facto extension of the one-year term set forth in the Trademark Law to reach a settlement with the opponent or take the case to court.

The practical effect of the new law is that the applicant will have to initiate and complete any mediation and file a court action seeking dismissal of the opposition before the expiration of the one-year term. Otherwise, the objected application will lapse.