Additional Distinctive Marks in Mexican Industrial Property Law

May 14, 2008
Additional Distinctive Marks in Mexican Industrial Property Law

Mexico’s Industrial Property Law (Ley de la Propiedad Industrial) also recognizes and protects distinctive symbols as trademarks that are eligible for protection,such as: (a) commercial slogans; (b) commercial or assumed names; and (c) denominations of origin. Commercial slogans are understood as “phrases and sayingsthat have as their purpose publicizing public establishments or commercial/industrial or products and services businesses as distinguished by their nature,” whichincludes slogans published on one or more occasions and recognized by the consuming public as associated with such trademark. In addition, a namedistinguishing a commercial establishment or business is also subject to protection under Mexican law, such as the case of a commercial name or assumed name,and acquires legal protection without the necessity of registration or when such commercial names may not be registered. For proper protection, one may simplyrequest publication of the commercial or assumed name in an official newspaper (gaceta official) similar to the procedure for registering a trademark orcommercial slogan, with such commercial name or assumed names being subject to opposition only in the territory where clientele are located. Finally, adenomination of origin is understood to be “a name from a geographic region in Mexico that serves to designate a product as originating in such region and whosequality or characteristics emanate exclusively from such geographic regions, with such characteristics being understood as natural and human factors.” Ownershipof these rights belongs to the government, but private parties desiring to utilize a denomination of origin may request from Mexico’s Intellectual Property Institute(Instituto Mexicano de Propiedad Intelectual or IMPI) approval to use the denomination of origin by demonstrating strict compliance with each and all of therequirements necessary for a product emanating from such a specific region.

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