World Intellectual Property Organization

Georgia

Comments on the Legislation of Georgia in the Field of Intellectual Property Protection

 

 


Legislation of Georgia in the Field of Intellectual Property Protection

Legislation currently in force in Georgia (6 main laws) was adopted in 1999, in connection with the process of joining the World Trade Organization.

In 2005 the Parliament of Georgia adopted amendments to the Laws of Georgia "on Copyright and Neighboring Rights" and "on Border Measures Relating to Intellectual Property". The adoption of these amendments was conditioned by the necessity of further harmonization of the existing legislation with the legislation of European Union and new liabilities binding Georgia due to accession to the international treaties (the so-called "Internet Treaties" of the World Intellectual Property Organization "WIPO Copyright Treaty" and "WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty", Rome Convention for the Protection of Performers, Producers of Phonograms and Broadcasting Organizations).

At the same time, significant amendments were entered in the Criminal Code and the Code of Administrative Violations. In particular, a full list of intellectual property rights infringement types (amongst the Internet) was formed and sanctions were made more strict.

In 2007 the Parliament of Georgia adopted two new laws "for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants" and "for the Protection of New Breeds of Animals".

Patent Law of Georgia

The Patent Law of Georgia at the same time embraces three subject-matters of industrial property: inventions, utility models and industrial designs.

It regulates property and personal non-property relations formed in connection with creation, legal protection and exploitation of the above subject-matters.

Under the Law, a natural person, as a result of whose intellectual work an invention, utility model or an industrial design was created, shall be considered to be the author of the invention, utility model, industrial design.

The authorship is an unalienable perpetually protected right.

The author or his assignee shall be authorized to secure a patent.

According to the Law, for an invention, utility model or a design, which is connected with performance of official duties or a special task and implies an inventive activity, the employer shall be entitled to obtain the patent, unless otherwise provided by the contract. Thus, the inventor or the author of an industrial design has a possibility to produce his conditions during conclusion of a contract with the employer and when the respective subject-matter is created he may have a share in income or, furthermore, become a co-owner of the patent.

According to the classical understanding of patent, the patent owner has an exclusive right in the invention, utility model and industrial design protected by patent.

Resulting from the practice established in the patent law, the Law does not define an invention and utility model. It only gives the criteria of patentability, which the subject-matters should comply with, in order to be considered as an invention or utility model.

Criteria of invention are the following: novelty, inventive step and industrial applicability.

The notion of novelty is connected with the state of the art. Namely, the Law determines that the invention is novel, if it is not known from the existing state of the art. From its part, the existing state of the art is defined by all those data, that have become commonly known on the basis of written or verbal descriptions, public use or other sources before the filing date of the application for a patent,

The Law provides for an exception for the substances and mixtures known from the existing state of the art, which may be recognized as patentable if they are used by hitherto unknown appointment.

The invention involves the inventive step, if it is not obvious from the existing state of the art for the person skilled in the art.

Industrial application of the invention implies the capability of its production, or making use of it in the sphere of industry, agriculture, health and other spheres of activities.

In contrast to the invention, a utility model shall satisfy only the criteria of novelty and industrial applicability.

Under the Law, by a patent shall be protected an industrial design which represents a new artistic-constructive exterior of the article and complies with the criteria of novelty and industrial applicability.

The utility model is the same invention, but it shall not comply with the requirements of inventive step. Thus, protection of this subject-matter is very important for small and medium organizations and enterprises, which do not have a strong scientific and technological potential, but are able to solve tasks of practical importance and as a result are interested in securing its legal protection.

At the same time, as international and our own experience shows, utility models mainly include fields connected with production of consumer goods, in which the Georgian market and economy is very interested at present.

The Law provides for granting an importation patent to the foreign patent owner.

Under the Law and in compliance with the requirements of the European Patent Convention, the following shall not be considered as an invention or utility model:

(a) a discovery, scientific theory, or mathematical method;

(b) a result of artistic design;

(c) algorithms and programs for computers;

(d) education, teaching method and system, grammatical system of language, also methods for performing mental acts, rules for games or doing business.

(e) economical organization and managing methods;

(f) plans and schemes of structures, buildings, territories;

(g) presentation of information.

The Law also establishes a number of factors and fields when the patent shall not be granted.

The patent shall not be granted: for the invention, utility model, or industrial design, the commercial exploitation of which may cause inhuman, immoral and/or anti-social action.

The patent shall not be granted also for the methods relating to the surgical, therapeutic and diagnostic treatment of people and animals. This rule does not extend over devices, substances, which are applied in the mentioned methods.

Here we should note that this rule functions in the absolute majority of foreign countries.

The patent shall not be granted for plant varieties and breeds of animals, as well as predominantly biological methods for their raising.

Legal protection of such subject-matters in Georgia, as well as in many countries, is ensured by special laws.

At the same time, under the Patent Law, patent shall be granted for microbiological methods and products obtained by means of these methods. This field along with others comprises strains of microorganisms, cell cultures of plants and animals, objects of biotechnology and genetic engineering.

The Law does not provide for granting a patent for secret invention and utility model. The patent shall be granted only after their disclosure.

The application of this statute is connected with the circumstance that resulting from secrecy of the object the main right of the patent owner – use the invention at his discretion, shall not be admissible.

As to relations of the state and applicant and, amongst, to the issue of pecuniary compensation, before disclosure of the inventions it is regulated under the special statutory act.

In the case of industrial designs, a patent shall not be granted for:

- exterior of buildings and other real estate, except small architectural forms;

- liquid, gaseous, loose and other objects having unstable form;

- articles exterior of which is conditioned only by technical or functional appointment of their essential features;

- printed matter.

Examination is the basis for granting a patent. Examination of an invention is performed for novelty and with the purpose of analysis a documentary conclusion about state of the art is sent to the applicant. As to the inventive step, it is evaluated by the Chamber of Appeals of Sakpatenti or by the court, in the case of existence of a contending party.

In the case of a utility model, examination is performed for local novelty, i.e. on the basis of studying the patents granted in Georgia and applications pending at Sakpatenti.

Patent for an industrial design is granted only on the basis of formal requirements examination.

As compared with the other forms of property, patent rights are limited by territory and time.

In particular, the patent of Georgia shall protect an exclusive right of the patent owner in the territory of Georgia, and duration of protection makes for inventions – 20 years, for utility modes – 8 years and for industrial designs – 15 years.

The Law, at the same time, under certain conditions provides for limitation of exclusive rights derived from the patent.

In particular, as an infringement of the exclusive right deriving from the patent shall not be considered: distribution or other use of the product manufactured by the patent owner or with his consent following to its introduction in the civil circulation.

Use of the industrial property subject-matter under private rule for personal benefits shall be admissible, where such action is not taken for commercial purposes. Their use on marine, air and land transport facilities of a foreign country, at their presence within the territory of Georgia, shall also be admissible, where they are used for personal needs and not for entrepreneurship. These subject-matter may also be used without any consent during natural calamities, catastrophes, epidemic and other emergency situations.

If any person, before filing of an application for patent by the applicant has used this invention, utility model or industrial design in good faith, or has carried out preparatory works for its use, he shall be entitled to use it individually irrespective of the patent duration.

The patent owner may sell or alienate otherwise the patent, issue a license under the established rule.

The license may be simple or exclusive. The simple license shall retain all the rights deriving from the patent to a licensor. Granting of an exclusive license deprives a licensor of the right to grant other licenses under similar conditions.

The patent shall be cancelled, if the subject of the patent is not patentable, or does not describe an invention, utility model and industrial design so fully as to make its embodiment possible; the subject of a patent relates to such objects for which under the Patent Law the patent shall not be granted; subject of the patent is beyond the scope of the application contents. Duration of the patent shall lapse, where the established fee is not paid or at will of the patent owner.

One of the main objectives of the patent law is to balance the interests of the patent owner and the public during the use of industrial property subject-matter.

With this purpose the Law provides for the compulsory licensing procedure, in particular, if the invention or utility model was not used during four years from granting the patent in the territory of Georgia, or was used insufficiently, also, where their use was impossible without infringement of an earlier patent, the State shall be authorized (on the basis of an administrative act or court decision) to make the patent owner grant the license to use the invention or utility model with the relevant remuneration.

Where the necessity of using patent in the interests of national defense, human health protection, or economy is proved, the State may grant an official license before expiration of the four years term.

The Law contains the regulating norms concerning participation of Georgia in the Patent Cooperation Treaty.

A national of Georgia (a natural person or legal entity) shall be authorized to file an international application with Sakpatenti.

Under the Patent Cooperation Treaty, filing of such an application with Sakpatenti legally shall be equal to filing of an application with the patent offices of the PCT Contracting Countries. Taking into account that this is followed by international examination at the leading patent centers of the world, procedure of securing patent in foreign countries becomes much more simple.

Law of Georgia on Trademarks

The Law on Trademarks regulates the relations connected with registration and protection of trademarks, service marks and collective marks, also with the use of such marks.

Under the Law of Trademarks: "A trademark is a sign or combination of signs that can be represented graphically and is capable of distinguishing the goods and/or services of one undertaking from those of other undertakings."

Thus, the trademark shall satisfy two main requirements – be capable of distinguishing with respect to goods and be represented graphically.

Under the Law, a word or words, also proper names, letters, figures, sounds, design or three-dimensional figure, including the shape of goods or their wrapping as well as other packaging using colors or combination of colors may be used as a trademark.

In Georgia the basis of the trademark protection shall be its registration at Sakpatenti or under the international agreement. Well-known trademarks are protected without registration under Article 6bis of the Paris Convention.

The Law establishes a number of limitations relating to the registration of trademarks.

A sign, or combination of signs shall not be registered as a trademark where it:

- is descriptive with respect to the goods for which registration is requested, in particular, points to kind, quality, quantity, characteristics, value, intended purpose, geographical origin of the goods; is widely used as a generic term for the particular type of goods or represents a widely established trade term or sign (these prohibitions shall not apply for cases, when the trademark through its use in civil circulation at the moment of registration has become distinctive in relation to the goods).;

- irritates or is contrary to national dignity, religious sentiment and traditions and moral standards;

- is likely to deceive the public with respect to goods.

It shall also be inadmissible to register international or national symbols, official hallmarks, signs, seals, orders and others as trademarks.

The basis for refusal of trademark registration shall also be rights accrued earlier, particularly, similar or identical trademarks registered earlier, appellations of origin and geographical indications, industrial designs protected in Georgia.

The registration as a trademark of the names, pseudonyms, facsimiles, portraits of famous (or historical) persons in Georgia without the respective consent or permission shall also be inadmissible.

The trademark shall be registered on the basis of formal and substantive examination performed by Sakpatenti.

The Law before the registration of the trademark provides for publication of its image and respective data in the Official Bulletin of Industrial Property. Registration takes place only after three months from the publication, if within this period an appeal concerning the trademark registration is not filed with the Chamber of Appeals of Sakpatenti.

The exclusive rights of a trademark holder shall come into being on the date of the registration of the trademark.

The Law determines certain conditions and scope of exclusive rights.

The duration of the trademark shall be defined by 10 years. This term may be renewed indefinitely by consecutive periods of 10 years.

Partial or full transfer of rights resulting from the trademark registration to the other natural person or legal entity shall be admissible. This transfer may take place together or without the goodwill.

The right to use the trademark may be granted by its holder to another person on the basis of a license agreement.

Under the Law, loss of rights in the trademarks takes place as a result of cancellation or recognition as void of the mark registration.

Registration of the trademark may be cancelled – after the expiration of the registration term, on the death of holder or liquidation of legal entity, the trademark has become a generic term and in other cases defined by the Law. Registration of the trademark may be recognized as void, where the trademark has been registered in breach of the requirements of absolute grounds for refusal of registration. According to the amendments entered in the Law in 2005, recognition of the trademark registration as void became possible, if it was registered in bad faith, without consent of the trademark holder by his attorney in his name, or, if by registration the copyright of the third party was infringed.

The Law also regulates the relations connected with the collective marks.

The collective mark distinguishes the goods of the members of an association of holders of said mark from those of other parties with respect to the geographical origin, common qualitative features or other features.

The holder of the collective mark may be an association of producers established with the purpose of exploitation of the collective mark, or a legal entity governed by the public law.

Where the collective mark contains a geographical name, regulations of the association shall provide for the possibility of joining the association by any person, whose goods originate from said geographical region and comply with the requirements of the regulations.

Transfer or licensing of the collective mark to the person, who is not a member of the association holder of the collective mark.

The Law provides for the norms regulating examination procedure of the international applications, conditioned by the membership of Georgia of the Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks.

Under the Protocol entrepreneurs of Georgia have the possibility to file with Sakpatenti an international application for a trademark and request its registration in all states - Contracting Parties of the Protocol.

Law of Georgia on Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications of Goods

This Law regulates the relations formed in connection with the registration, protection and use of appellations of origin and geographical indications of goods (services).

According to the Law, an appellation of origin is a modern or historical name of a geographical place, region or, in exceptional cases, a name of a country, used for designation of the goods: originating within the given geographical area, specific quality and features of which are essentially or exclusively due to a particular geographical environment and human factors, whereas production of the goods, processing and preparation of the raw material take place within the defined geographical area.

As distinct from the appellations of origin, in the case of geographical indications, the link of the goods with the geographical place is weaker. In this case, the preparation, processing and production of the raw material is not required to take place in one and the same place, compliance with one of the conditions shall be sufficient, but, of course it should be decisive at formation of features and building up of a reputation of the goods.

Protection of appellations of origin and geographical indications in Georgia is performed by Sakpatenti on the basis of their registration or international agreements.

With the purpose of recognition and registration of the appellation of origin and geographical indication, the interested party shall present the respective materials to Sakpatenti including the data about the specific quality and features of the goods, the link and relationship of the characteristics and features with the geographical place, as well as description of specific conditions and methods of production (in case of the existence of the latter). At the same time, the above data shall be based on scientific investigations and confirmed by the organization having the rights delegated by the state.

Before taking the final decision, in order to take into account the public opinion, the presented materials are published in the Official Bulletin of Intellectual Property, one central and local newspaper.

As an appellation of origin or geographical indication shall not be registered a name, which has become a generic name, is likely to mislead the public as to the origin of the goods, contradicts to the national dignity, religion and traditions, public morality and order.

According to the Law, after the registration of the appellations of origin or geographical indication, their use shall be admissible only on the basis of the permission issued by the State controlling organization after examination of compliance of features of the produced goods and production conditions with data of the Register under the established rule and periodicity. The rule of examination and periodicity shall be defined by the special statutory act.

Together with the registration, the Law provides for the protection of geographical indications of those countries, which on the basis of reciprocity principles ensure the same protection for the geographical indications of Georgia.

Registered appellations of origin and geographical indications shall be protected against the following: any direct or indirect commercial use of an appellation of origin or geographical indication registered in respect to the goods not covered by the registration, insofar as those goods are similar to the registered goods or insofar as using the name exploits the reputation of the registered appellation of origin or geographical indication, any use of the registered appellation of origin and geographical indication, which word for word designates the real place of manufacture of goods, processing or preparing of the raw material, but is likely to mislead the public as to the true origin of the goods, or any use of such a name or indication, which is the imitation or evocation of the registered appellation of origin or geographical indication, even in translation, or accompanied with such words as "type”, "style”, "similar”, "as produced in”, "method”, etc.

The Law of Georgia on Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications of Goods has a great importance for Georgia, as a country producing wines and agricultural products. It forms a legal base in our country for production of elite, high quality and value products and for their protection from unfair competition.

Law of Georgia on Topographies of Integrated Circuits

This Law regulates property and personal non-property relations formed in connection with the registration, exploitation and legal protection of topographies of integrated circuits.

The necessity of protection of this subject-matter emerged together with the development of technologies of the micro-size multiple-unit semiconductor devices (integrated circuits), when the integrated circuit elements are arranged on the basis of the spatial pattern – topography.

The Law provides for the registration of topographies of integrated circuits and for issuance of the respective certificate by Sakpatenti, confirming exclusive rights of the proprietor of registered topography. The exclusive rights are valid during 10 years from the date of registration. Legal entities and natural persons are entitled to register the topography.

Only original topography, i.e. which is a result of creative efforts and is not commonplace for the date of filing of application, shall be the subject of protection.

The exclusive right of proprietor shall apply to the commercial use of the topography and the integrated circuit incorporating it or complete product, amongst to import.

The following shall not be deemed to be the infringement of the exclusive right in topography:

- use of the topography, or product incorporating thereof for personal purposes without gaining any profit, also for analysis, research or teaching;

- further distribution of IC or product embodying IC made by topography proprietor or on basis of IC distributed with his consent;

- use of identical original topography made independently by the other person before publication of the registered topography;

- creation by another person of an improved topography on the basis of research of the commonplace topography, if the new topography complies with the requirements of originality.

As in the case of patents, it shall be admissible to issue the compulsory license only in the cases where it was dictated by non-commercial interests of the state, or was conditioned by court or administrative acts aimed to prevent unfair competition.

For consideration of litigation with the applicant, application of the respective norms of the Patent Law is provided for.

Law of Georgia on Copyright and Neighboring Rights

In Georgia the relations formed in connection with the copyright and related rights are regulated by the Law of Georgia on Copyright and Neighboring Rights, which was adopted in 1999.

According to the Law, the copyright shall apply to scientific, literary and artistic works, which are the result of intellectual-creative activities, irrespective of appointment, value, genre, size, forms and means for its expression. Amongst books, brochures, articles, lectures, dramatic works, musical works, audiovisual (cinematographic) works, works of fine arts, painting, sculpture, photography, works of decorative and applied arts, maps, plans, sketches, architectural works, derivative works (translations, adaptations, screenings), compilation works (encyclopedias, anthology, database), computer programs, etc.

Copyrights shall not apply to ideas, methods, processes, systems, means, concepts, principles, discoveries and facts, even if they are expressed, explained, described, illustrated or embodied in a work.

Copyright shall accrue automatically at the moment of the creation of the work and its registration, deposition or compliance with other formalities shall not be necessary. But, as in many countries, the Law of Georgia, if there is desire of the author, provides for the possibility of deposition of the original or a copy of the work at Sakpatenti. As a result of deposition, Sakpatenti shall issue a certificate, which does not accrue the copyright, but confirms only the fact of the deposition.

Under the Law, the author has the personal moral and economic rights. The author's moral right shall be the following: to be recognized as the author of the work, right to take decision when, where and in what a form to make known the fact of work creation, right to protect the work from any distortion or mutilation that may damage his/her honor, dignity or business reputation.

The exclusive economic right shall mean the right to exercise, permit or prohibit the following: reproduction of the work, distribution of the original or copies of the work among the public, public performance of the work, communication to the public of the work, in particular, broadcasting of the work by radio or television, by cable or Internet, translation of the work, remake of the work , renting of the original or a copy of the work and/or assignment of ownership in other form.

Without consent of the author and without payment of the royalty it shall be permitted to cite the work or use it as illustration in publications for scientific, polemic, critical and information purposes, reproduction of the work seen or heard in the process of reviewing current events by magazines and other periodicals with the information purposes or its communication to the public, public performance of musical works during official, funeral and religious ceremonies, etc.

The copyright shall arise at the moment of the creation of the work and shall run for the life of the author and 70 years from his death.

After the lapse of the copyright duration the work may be used by any person without paying the royalty.

According to the Law, the copyright shall be transferred under the Law, testament or on the basis of an agreement. The author may transfer all his economic rights or its part to his assignee. He may concede the right to use the work to any person, i.e. grant a license to use the work.

Subject-matter for protection under the neighboring rights shall be the following: performance, phonogram or audiovisual work, broadcasts of on-air and cable broadcasting organizations, and protected subjects shall be performers, producers of phonograms and audiovisual works and broadcasting organizations.

The Law grants the performers economic and moral rights. Amongst, the right to protect the work from any distortion or mutilation, the right to permit or prohibit recording of the performance, reproduce the performance record, transmit the performance over the air or by cable, distribute the performance recorded on phonogram and videogram, amongst by Internet, etc.

Producer of the phonogram and vidoegram shall have the exclusive economic right to permit or prohibit reproduction of the phonogram or videogram, distribution of the copies, renting, distribution by Internet, etc.

Broadcasting organizations shall be authorized to permit or prohibit recording of the broadcast; reproduction of broadcast record, simultaneous transmission over the air of the broadcast and retransmission by the cable, distribution by Internet, communication to the public of the broadcast, where the entry is paid, etc.

The use of performance, phonogram, videogram, broadcasting organization programs and their records without consent of the performer, phonogram or videogram producer and broadcasting organization and without payment of the royalty to them, shall be permitted in the following cases: during citing, provided that such citation is carried out for scientific, polemic, critical and information purposes, during teaching or scientific research in the form of excerpts and illustrations, during reporting of current events inserting of short excerpts.

Duration of performers rights shall be 50 years calculated from the first performance.

Duration of the phonogram and videogram producers rights shall be 50 years calculated from the first record of the phonogram or videogram.

The right of a broadcasting (or cable) organization shall run during 50 years after the first transmission by such an organization of a broadcast over the air or by cable.

Under the sui generis norms of the Law a database that does not represent a "work" and is different from the "database" protected by copyright is also protected. The maker of such a database shall enjoy the right to permit or prohibit its use, if he has carried out substantial investments from the qualitative and quantitative point of view for purchasing, acquiring, verifying or performing of the database contents.

In connection with the development of the Internet and digital technologies, the Law allows the right holders to use such a special modern instrument for enforcement as "technological measures" and "rights management information". Under the Law changing or deletion of the rights management information and circumvention of technological measures shall be considered to be the violation of rights.

For effective enforcement and collection and distribution of royalties the Law provides for the right of authors to create a voluntary association authorized to perform collective management of authors economic rights. The main function of the organization shall be to grant licenses to users of the work and neighboring rights subject-matters, collect royalties and distribute them among its members, as well as among the foreign authors.

The Law authorizes the right holders to demand from the infringer the recognition of the right, prevention of the infringing actions, reimbursement of the damages, including the neglected profit.

The Law also explains the counterfeit copies, which is important for civil, administrative and criminal enforcement.

For enforcement of the civil action the Law permits the court, before consideration as to merits of the case, to seize the counterfeit copies, materials and facilities for producing of the counterfeit copies and other technical devices, documents, reports and other evidences

Law of Georgia for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants

This Law regulates relationship between the legal protection and use of new varieties of plants and applies to all the botanic genera of cultivated plants and all varieties of species.

On the basis of registration and issuing the certificate, Sakpatenti shall grant the breeder an exclusive right to use the new plant variety.

Duration of breeder's exclusive rights in the new plant variety shall be defined by 25 years from the day of its registration and 30 years for vine, caulescent, fruit, decorative, tea, subtropical culture and forest varieties, including rootstocks.

Under the Law the breeder shall be not only the person who bred, discovered and developed the new plant variety, but the employer or assignee.

The new plant variety shall be registered and the certificate shall be issued, if it complies with the criteria of protactability – novelty, distinctness, uniformity and stability. The plant variety shall be considered to be new, if, for the day of filing of the application with Sakpatenti, propagating or harvesting material of the variety has not been offered for using in commercial purposes or alienation by the breeder or other person and/or was not alienated or otherwise transferred to the third party: in the territory of Georgia one year earlier, in the territory of other country four years earlier, and in the case of vine and other plant varieties – six years earlier.

Distinctness of the new plant variety from the other existing plant varieties, uniformity of the new main features and stability of these features in generations shall be determined by special tests performed by a legal entity or natural person appointed by the Ministry of Agriculture on the basis of relevant accreditation.

Where the new variety of plant was tested in other country, tests in Georgia shall not be performed In this case, the basis of Sakpatenti decision shall be the relevant conclusion issued by the competent authority of the other country.

The exclusive right of the breeder to use the new variety of plant shall mean the right to produce the new plant variety himself, permit and/or prohibit its production and reproduction, with the purpose of further propagation bringing to seeding condition, offering for sale, alienation or other type of transfer of rights, exportation and importation. The exclusive right of the new plant variety breeder shall also apply to: crops received of the new variety of plant and plant varieties bred from the protected variety.

The exclusive right of the new plant variety breeder shall not apply to: use of the new plant variety for personal or non-commercial, experimental and breeding purposes, as well as using of the crops received in such a case as a final product.

The Law provides for limitation of the breeder's exclusive right taking into account the public interests through granting of a compulsory license.

The Law of Georgia for the Protection of New Breeds of Animals (2006) repeats the provisions of the Law for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants and the difference between them does not go beyond the difference of protected subject-matters.

Law of Georgia on Border Measures Relating to Intellectual Property establishes the rule of applying the special border measures at importation or exportation of the goods infringing the copyright, right of neighboring right holders, owners of the rights in appellation of origin and geographical indications, trademarks, rights of the maker of databases.

Under the Law, a special register shall be created at the Customs Department of Georgia, where the interested right holder may register his own trademark, subject-matter of copyright and neighboring rights, database, appellation of origin or geographical indication and declare the information necessary for identification of goods.

At finding of the suspicious goods the Custom bodies shall be authorized to suspend these goods, immediately notify of the fact the right holder or his representative and hand over the specimen for inspection.

Where the right holder is assured that the suspended goods are counterfeit, he may apply to the court and request reimbursement of damages and destruction of the goods. And, where the owner of suspended goods declines his goods, the Customs Department shall destruct the goods at the expense and responsibility of the right holder. This rule shall also apply in the case, when the owner of the suspended goods does not respond to the notification of the Customs Department concerning the request of the right holder with respect of destruction of the goods.

The Criminal Code (Articles 189, 1891, 196) provides for liability for infringement of intellectual property rights as well. In particular, Article 189 of the above Code, considers to be an offence the misappropriation of authorship or forcing on authorship of the work, as well as illegal reproduction, purchase of counterfeit copies, importation, storing, selling, renting with the purpose of gaining of income or other violation of rights of the holder of copyright and neighboring rights.

The Criminal Code provides for liability for infringement of industrial property rights as well. In particular, according to Article 1891, the misappropriation or forcing on authorship of the invention, utility model, industrial design, topography of integrated circuit are considered to be an offence. Also knowingly illegal use of other's invention, utility model, industrial design, topography of integrated circuit with the purpose of gaining income.

According to Article 196 of the Code, production in large quantities or introduction into civil circulation of the goods bearing the other person's trademark, appellation of origin or geographical indication that caused significant damages, as well as false indication of warning notice together with unregistered trademark, appellation of origin or geographical indication of goods shall be considered to be punishable actions.

The Criminal Code in the form of sanctions provides for penalties, detention or imprisonment for commitment of the above offences.

In the Code of Administrative Violations of Georgia Articles 1571, 1572, 1573 and 158 concern infringement of intellectual property rights. These articles provide for liability for infringement of the rights of copyright and neighboring right holders, as well as for infringement of trademark holders rights.

The Code of Administrative Violations of Georgia provides for the liability for illegal reproduction of a work, phonogram, videogram or database, circumvention of technological measures, for illegal change, destruction or falsification of the "rights management information", purchase, importation, storing, selling, renting of counterfeit copies or other infringement of the rights of copyright and neighboring right holders or of the database maker with the purpose of gaining income. Unlawful change or destruction of the protective mark applied by the right holder of the work, phonogram, videogram or database copies shall be considered to be an infringement of rights.

The penalty is provided for the above actions in the form of a sanction, and for the same action committed repeatedly by the person who during one year for such a commitment was sentenced to administrative penalty together with the increased amount of penalty the Code of Administrative Violations of Georgia provides for confiscation of materials, devices and technical facilities required for violation. Confiscated counterfeit copies, materials, devices and technical facilities required for violation are subjected to destruction, with the exception of cases, when they are handed over to the holder of copyright or neighboring rights or the maker of the database on the basis of his request.

In addition, legislation of Georgia provides for civil liability for infringement of copyright and neighboring rights. Under Article 59 of the Law of Georgia on Copyright and Neighboring Rights, the holder of copyright and neighboring rights and the maker of database may demand reimbursement of damages and recognition of right.

Legislation of Georgia in the field of intellectual property, which was developed with the participation of the experts of the World Intellectual Property Organization, World Trade Organization, European Patent Office and other countries of the EU, it complies and is harmonized with the international treaties and Regulations of the European Community.

 

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