Intelletual Property Law (Presidential Law Decree No. 19 of 1994 in respect of Intellectual Property)
- Article 1
PART ONE Author's Right
- Chapter 1 The Author & His Rights
- Chapter 2 Collective Works
- Chapter 3 Registration Procedures
- Chapter 4 Transfer of a Creative Work to the State Ownership
- Chapter 5 Authorship Contract
- PART TWO The Right to a Discovery
PART THREE The Right of the Inventor
Chapter 1 Invention & Creative Proposal
- Section 1 Substantive Conditions
- Section 2 Registration Procedures
- Section 3 Effects of Registration
Chapter 2 Industrial & Trade Marksand Industrial Drawings & Designs
- Section 1 Industrial & Trade Marks
- Section 2 Industrial Drawings & Designs
- Section 3 Violation of Protection
- Chapter 1 Invention & Creative Proposal
- PART FOUR General & Conclusive Provisions
Intellectual Property Law Law No. 19 for the Year 1994 Official Gazette No. 20 issued on 27 Jumada I, 1415 A.H. corresponding to 31 October, 1994
Presidential Law Decree No. 19 for the Year 1994
in respect of Intellectual Property
After perusal of the Constitution of the Republic of Yemen,
At the presentation of the Prime Minister,
And with the approval of the Council of Ministers,
The Law of Intellectual Right aims at protecting the right of the author, discoverer and inventor to ensure the freedom of creation, enhancing technological development, regulating their utilization of their works, and protecting the society's interest in making benefit of the fruits of literary, scientific and artistic innovation.
PART ONE Author's Right
Chapter 1 The Author & His Rights
The subject of the author's right shall be the creative works distinguished by innovation in the fields of literature, arts and science, whatever the form of the work, its purpose, production, importance or method are, and whether the work can be classified into a branch of the known branches of creation or not.
- A subject of copyright shall be each work in which expression is made in writing, sound, drawing, modeling and the like, in particular the following:
- -Written scientific, literary and artistic works. -Works included in the arts of drawing, painting, carving, sculpture or architecture. -Works delivered verbally, such as speeches, lectures, preachments and the like. -Dramatic works and musical plays. -Music whether accompanied with words or not. -Photographic and movie works.
-Maps, geographical drawings and sketches.
-Model works whatever is the art related thereto.
-Works prepared for broadcasting by radio or television.
-Works related to applied arts, and in general every work in which expression
is made in writing, sound, drawing modeling, movement and the like.
- The right of the writer shall include the title of the book if it has an innovative quality and is not a common term used to indicate the subject of the book.
- Counterfeiting of drawings, symbols and all elements which distinguish the form of innovated products shall be prohibited if this leads to causing confusion to the public as regards the reality of the innovated work.
- The right of the author shall include the translator of the work into another language as well as who changed it from its original colors to another color, who summarized, altered or explained it or commented on it in any manner that would render it in an innovated or new form, without prejudice to the rights of the original author.
- The right of the author shall include the photographic product. However, this shall not prohibit others from taking new photographs of the photographed thing, even if the new photographs were taken under the same circumstances in which the first photograph was taken.
The right of the writer shall not extend to:
- Compiled words which include works other than those of the compiler, such as poetry, prose and music anthologies, as well as other compiled works, without prejudice to the rights of the original authors.
- Every book whose author's rights have become public property.
- Collected official documents, such as the texts of governmental and political announcements; texts of laws, decrees, regulations; courts decisions and all official documents. However, protection shall include the above-mentioned works if they appear to have a distinguishing quality of their compiler, which deserves protection, or if they are characterized by innovation or distinctive order.
- Works which are not fit to be the subject of the right of an author, such as works which contain anthologies from the tradition or folklore, or whose author is unknown.
The author's right shall include the following:
- o The translator of a work previously translated.
- o Who verified works of the tradition or commented thereon, even if they were previously verified or commented on.
- o Who verified a set of folks innovations whose author is unknown, provided the reissue or verification contains a personal element characterized by creation or innovation. In all cases, this shall not prejudice the rights of the original author, translator or verifier.
The Yemeni author's right to a creative work published in Yemen or abroad shall be recognized, and the non-Yemeni author's right shall also be recognized if the law of his country accords the same treatment to Yemenis, or according to international agreements in which the Republic of Yemen is a part thereto.
The author's rights shall be established once the work is created. The drafts and excerpts shall be the right of the author if they have an innovative value. The same applies to works of art completion phases.
Any one, whether he is a natural of legal person, who publishes a work attributing it to himself, by mentioning his name on the work or by any other way, shall be considered the author, unless the contrary is proved.
Provision of the previous article shall apply to pseudonym; symbol or surname used to indicate a certain author, provided there is not the least doubt as to the identity of the author.
A work may be published anonymously at the author's request.
The author of a work who published his work under a pseudonym, a symbol, a surname or anonymously, may at any time reveal his identity, even if he previously agreed otherwise.
The author shall have the right to the following:
- To decide publishing a work and indicate the method of its publication.
- Immunity and protection of a work.
- To obtain remuneration commensurate with the nature of the work and its type, for its use by others, with the exception of the cases provided for by the law.
The author shall have the right to utilize his production in the appropriate methods, in particular:
- Printing an unspecific number of copies in any method, such as handwriting, by printing machines, offset, sound recording or movie or video recording.
- Public performance of the creative work in seminars, music halls, stage, movie or paintings and photographs exhibitions.
- Circulation in markets and national and international exhibitions.
- Translation of a work to another language or other languages.
- Reprinting a work.
The rights contained in the previous article shall be independent of each other , and exercising one of them shall not affect exercising the other rights . These rights shall include the whole of the work as well as each part thereof.
- Third parties may not make benefit of the unpublished work except with the express approval of the author, even if this does not constitute an infringement upon the moral or financial rights of the author.
- Making benefit of a published work shall be by reading it, quoting paragraphs or chapters from it or summarizing them for personal knowledge or for using them in studies a research and reference should be made to the work and to the author, in particular to the following:
- Work title.
- Author's name.
- Place of issue.
- Date of issue.
- Chapter, paragraph or page number.
Without the approval of the author and without paying the authorship remuneration but with referring to the name of the quoted author, a published work may be used for forming a new independent work as regards innovation, except converting a novel to a play or to a scenario or vice versa, and also except converting a play into a scenario or vice versa, as well as except changing a poem to a song and vice versa. The copyright in this case to the new work shall be to the person who made this new work by using other's work. Such right shall not prohibit others from using the work.
- A work shall be considered published if it was issued, publicly performed, publicly exhibited, broadcast by radio or television, or conveyed to an unlimited circle of people, or by other means whatever they are.
- A work shall also be considered published if the industrial products containing the work of art were put on the market, or if a building was constructed according to an engineering design, and the like.
- Informing about a work and presenting the contents or photocopies thereof shall not be considered a publication of the work. The right to a work shall be maintained as long as the work itself did not pass to an unlimited circle of people.
It shall be prohibited to issue a creative work without the author's name , unless it is an express wish of the author.
When publishing a work or performing it in any manner, it shall be prohibited to make any modification or change thereto by deletion or addition without the author's consent, whether in the work itself, its title or the author's name. This includes the introductions, conclusions, explanations, comments, footnotes and illustrations by photographs. An exception shall be the works which require modifications which are necessary during execution, such as architectural works.
The author may appoint a person who will be in charge of the protection of his works' immunity after his death. Such person shall exercise his authorities for the whole of his life. If the author does not appoint any person for such purpose, protection of the author's works after his death shall be exercised by his sons and wife as well as the competent party. The competent party shall also exercise works immunity protection if there are no heirs, or if the author's right has expired with respect to them.
The Council of Ministers shall specify in consultations with the concerned parties the authors' remuneration rates for the others' use of their works. If there is no approved rate, remunerations for the use of a work shall be determined as agreed by the two parties.
The author's works may not be attached for settling his debts.
The author's right for the economic use of his work or obtaining a remuneration shall extend for the whole of his life.
After the death of the author, the author's right to the economic utilization shall be transferred to the heirs according to the rules of salaries and service benefits, and for a period of thirty years calculated as from January 1st of the year in which the author died.
A movie or T.V. film producer shall have the right to the economic utilization of his work or obtaining remuneration for a period of twenty-five years as from the date of production which shall be calculated as from January 1st of the production year.
The owner of the author's rights to photographs shall have the right to their economic utilization or obtaining from those who use them remuneration for (10) years as from the date of issue, and such remuneration shall be calculated from January 1st of the year of issue.
The broadcasting right to broadcasting programs shall be for two years, and shall be for three years for TV programs. The rights of authors, performers and their heirs shall be according to the general period.
Quotation from a published work without reference to the work according to article
(15) paragraph (2) shall be considered an infringement upon the author's rights, and shall deserve penalty and paying the appropriate compensation.
Chapter 2 Collective Works
If many persons participate in making a creative work, each of them shall become entitled against others to the author's rights for the whole work. However, the right of each author to his work individually shall not abate.
The relationship between co-authors shall be determined by agreement among them in a written contract.
If the participation of all authors is listed under a different type of arts, each one of them shall have the author's right to the part pertaining to him, without prejudice to his right to the whole of the work.
When many persons participate in lyrical music works, all the participants together shall have the right to a license for the public performance of the whole work, issuing it and making copies thereof.
The author of the literary part, as well as the composer of the music shall have the right to publish the part pertaining to him alone, provided this will not aggrieve the others.
The financial rights for the movie and TV film as a whole shall be for the producer, and each author shall maintain his moral right to the part pertaining to him.
If a group makes a creative work under the supervision of a body or institution which undertakes to publish it under its management and name, and the work of the participants is for an intended purpose, the rights of the author to the whole work shall be for the body or institution which issues it, and each editor or author shall have the author's rights to the research or articles he writes.
Chapter 3 Registration Procedures
For each creative work required to be registered, an application shall be submitted to the competent party, together with a copy of that work and the documents proving the right of ownership thereof.
The competent party shall notify the applicant of the acceptance of the application for examination, rejecting it or requesting the completion of the necessary procedures for carrying out the registration.
After making sure about the ownership of the creative work and its benefit, the competent party shall register it in its own documents, indicating the name of the creator or creators, work address and the registration date according to the method specified in the regulations
Registration shall result in protecting the creative work and prohibiting its use by any person without the consent of the holder of the registration certificate.
The competent courts shall decide the validity of registration or its nullity in case of conflict in respect of the creative work required to be registered or used.
Chapter 4 Transfer of a Creative Work to the State Ownership
Article 38 Article 39
The bodies and institutions which issue scientific, literary and artistic magazines and periodicals and daily, weekly and monthly newspapers shall maintain all the author's rights pertaining to them in a continuous manner if such bodies or institutions have a continuing status.
In case the public body or institution ceases to exist, the copyrights shall be directly transferred to the ownership of a similar governmental or private body or institution.
Chapter 5 Authorship Contract
For the purpose of using his creative work, the author may conclude an authorship contract with the beneficiary, under which the author undertakes to present a work and hand it over to the beneficiary on the date specified in the contract, for using it in the method stipulated in the contract. The beneficiary shall undertake to make such use during the period specified in the contract and to pay remuneration to the author.
An exception to the provision of the previous article shall be the works published in the newspapers and magazines. However, publication in a newspaper or a magazine shall not be considered a relinquishment of the copyright except according to a written contract published in the same newspaper or magazine accompanying the published work.
Any condition contained in the contract concluded with the author which leads to placing him in a worse position compared with the provisions stipulated by law or the standard contract shall be considered null & void. In such case, the condition shall be canceled and replaced by the provisions stipulated by law or the standard contract.
The contract shall be considered concluded once it is signed. In case the person or party, which benefits from the work violates the contract, the author shall be entitled to remuneration. If the violation is due to reasons beyond the control of the beneficiary or to force majeure, the author shall have the right to recover the work and publish it.
- If the author violates the authorship contract in such a manner as to result in rescinding the contract by the beneficiary, the author shall return to the beneficiary the remuneration he had received.
- This is valid in particular if the author, as a result of his error, did not hand over the work on the date specified in the contract, performed the work not to the contract's conditions, showed dishonesty or indifference, violated his duty by not personally executing the contractor or allowed others to use the work during the prohibition period.
Agreement to a print, prints, recording, performance or a certain execution shall not be considered a relinquishment of other prints recordings, performances or execution, except if this is expressly contained in the contract, unless there is a defect of will in the agreement. Relinquishment of a certain right shall not be considered a relinquishment of another right.
The amount of remuneration to be paid according to the authorship contract shall be decided by the agreement of both parties.
Authorship contracts are:
- Publication Contract -publishing the work or reprinting it.
- Production Contract -the public performance of an unpublished work.
- Artistic Assignment Contract -creation is a work of fine arts for the purpose of public performance.
- Scenario Contract for using the work in a movie or a TV film, or broadcasting it by radio or TV
- Industrial Ornamentation Contract -for using ornamentation art works in the industry.
- Translation & Conversion Contract -for using creative works in literature, arts and sciences.
PART TWO The Right to a Discovery
Discovery is to obtain knowledge of an existing matter previously unknown in the fields of laws, characteristics and phenomena related to the material world, including the discovery of materials or living things.
Each Yemeni who obtains knowledge of an existing matter previously unknown in the fields of laws, characteristics and phenomena of the material world shall be considered as having made a discovery, and shall enjoy the rights provided for in this law, in particular the following:
- His name or any name he deems appropriate shall be given to the discovery.
- The person who made the discovery shall be paid on incentive remuneration whose amount shall be determined by a resolution by the Council of Ministers, and shall be paid to the discoverer as a lump sum.
- The discoverer shall be granted a certificate proving that he has made the discovery, and that he has priority on the discovery.
- After the remuneration is paid to the discover or to his successor, the discovery shall be the right of all. However, in the case of applying the discovery in the field of industrial or agricultural investment, the discoverer shall continue to enjoy the financial right according to the provisions of this law.
The application to obtain the discovery certificate shall be submitted to the competent party by the discoverer or his successor, containing information on the discovery and supported by the necessary documents.
The competent party shall indicate in the application within 15 days as from the date of its submission that the applicant is accepted to make the examination or that the necessary papers should be completed and advise him thereof. In all cases, he shall be referred to examination 10 days after the completion of procedures. In case the set period has elapsed without a notice or making an examination, the applicant may resort to the judicial authorities to request examination and claim compensation.
When the application is accepted for examination, the application shall be referred during the period specified in the previous article to the concerned scientific centers to decide within three months as from the date of reference whether there is a discovery or not.
After the concerned scientific centers decide on the discovery, they shall issue a resolution to register the discovery with the competent party, specify the date of its precedence, and advise the competent party about it in the methods stipulated in the regulations.
The certificate of discovery shall be granted if there is no opposition within one year as form the date of the notice referred to in the previous article.
Priority of a discovery shall be determined to be the date of its first drafting in a magazine, report, meeting, statement, broadcasting by radio or TV or the like. If there is no such announcement of the discovery draft, the date of submitting the application to the competent party shall be adopted.
The courts shall decide on the dispute relating to the position of the discovery and the participation of many persons in making one discovery.
PART THREE The Right of the Inventor
Chapter 1 Invention & Creative Proposal
Section 1 Substantive Conditions
- Invention is an innovation which contains a solution for a technical assignment, characterized by substantial newness and has a positive result in any field of economy, culture, health or defense, such as innovating work tools, manufacturing material, finding a new industrial method or the technical of a scientific principle that gives direct industrial results.
- It shall also be considered on invention the innovation not connected with technology, such as obtaining new types of seeds or discovering new methods for the treatment of diseases.
- The newness of an invention means that it has not been used before, in the sense that the invention is new in the light of international technology, considering the scientific research achievements in Yemen and abroad.
Newness should be connected with the essence of things and not with
secondary and side elements.
The invention should be applicable i.e. can be manufactured or used in
industry or agriculture.
- The invention should also have actual benefit which would increase the rate of production or improve the quality of products and the like.
- The benefit of the invention may be realized immediately or in the future.
- The invention may be complementary to an original invention which still enjoys legal protection, and so it is based on it and contains a development or improvement thereto. In this case, the patent of the relating invention shall be granted for the remaining period of the patent of the original invention.
- Granting of the related invention patent shall not affect the rights of the patent owner of the original invention.
- The creative proposal for developing production aims at finding solutions to improve the applied technology, manufactured products, production technology, control systems, research or industrial safety technology, for the purpose of increasing work productivity and using energy, equipment and material more effectively.
- It is sufficient for a creative proposal to contain local newness in the light of production quality at a certain time. It is also not stipulated that newness is substantial.
- Each Yemeni, whatever his age, domicile or work are shall enjoy the legal protection stipulated for the inventor or proposer.
- The right of invention shall be decided for the Yemeni bodies and institutions in the following cases:
- If the invention is the result of collective creation or if it is impossible to determine the role of each individual who shared in the invention patent shall be issued in the name of the body or institution at which or with the assistance of which the invention was made.
- If the invention is made as a result of a matter related to service, according to an assignment or assistance from the state, body or institution. In such case the patent of invention shall be issued in the name of the person who made the invention or who assisted in making it. Reference should be made in the patent to the name of the person who made the invention.
- The rights of inventor or proposer shall be decided for foreigners abroad according to an international agreement concluded between the Republic of Yemen and the state to which they belong, according to similar treatment. The same provision shall apply to foreign legal persons.
- The Council of Ministers shall regulate the rules related to foreigners residing or working in Yemen.
- Granting an invention patent for inventions which violate the Yemeni social system and the provisions of the Islamic jurisprudence shall be prohibited.
- A patent may not be granted for:
- Non-chemical inventions related to foodstuff, medicines or pharmaceuticals. If these products are manufactured in special chemical methods, a patent may be granted for the method of its manufacture, and not for the products themselves.
- New methods for the treatment of diseases.
- Biological methods for the production of new type of animals or plants.
If a person presents a creative proposal for developing production and his proposal is accepted for application, he shall be granted a certificate attributing the proposal to him.
The inventor or the person who submits the creative proposal for developing production should cooperate effectively with the concerned parties in the application of the invention or proposal and in its development in future. He may participate in practicing the works related to the application of the invention or proposal according to the procedures stipulated in the regulations.
Section 2 Registration Procedures
- The inventor or his successor shall submit an application to the concerned parties containing a description of the invention and supported by the necessary documents.
- The concerned party shall notify the applicant within ten days of the acceptance of his application for examination, or ask him to complete the required papers. Priority for the invention shall be decided as from the date of submitting the application, and this shall be indicated in the notice addressed to the applicant.
- The invention shall be examined for its newness and the benefit expected from it, in the manner decided in the regulations.
- The owner of the patent for whom legal protection is decided and who wishes to make benefit of the priority of a previous application submitted in another country, should attach to his application submitted in Yemen a written statement of the date and number of the previous application and the country in which he or his predecessor submitted this application. He should submit within three months as from the date of the last application a photocopy of the previous application certified by the country in which it was submitted.
- In this case the priority of the application submitted abroad shall be determined when the application is submitted in Yemen within one year as from the date of the application submitted abroad.
- A person who exhibits his invention in a Yemeni or international exhibition officially approved, and then submits an application in Yemen to obtain a patent of an invention, priority shall be decided for his application which shall be the date of opening the exhibition to visitors, if he submits the application in Yemen within six months as from the date of opening the exhibition.
- The applicant should attach the required documents to his application, and these documents shall contain a certificate from the exhibition management indicating that his invention has been exhibited in the exhibition and specifying the date of opening the exhibition for visitors.
- The competent party shall issue within three months as a maximum as from the date of notifying the applicant of accepting his invention for examination a decision accepting his application together with a draft of the content of the invention, or rejecting the application and indicating the reasons thereof.
- The applicant may in both cases within one month of notifying him of the decision oppose the decision in relation to the draft of the content of the invention or the reasons for rejecting the application. The competent party concerned with the opposition shall take a decision in this regard within two months as from the date of making the opposition.
- In case of accepting the invention, the competent party should announce it in the methods decided in the regulations once it is accepted.
- Any interested party may within six months as from the date of announcing the invention object to the competent party for the registration of the invention.
- Upon objection, the competent party shall notify in writing the person who submitted the registration application of the objection. The applicant should answer in writing to the objection within one month notifying him thereof, otherwise he shall be considered as having relinquished the application.
- With the exception of the cases of confidential inventions, patents of invention should be registered in the patents register prepared for this purpose.
- The patents of invention and the actions related thereto should be announced in the methods decided in the regulations.
- Each relinquishment of a patent or a license to use the invention shall have no effect for the parties to the contract and vis-à-vis third parties unless it is recorded on the margin of the invention patent registration. The same shall apply to the assignment of right through inheritance.
- The patents register shall be an evidence of the information contained in if, unless the contrary is proved.
- Any person may have access to the patents register, or obtain an extract thereof or a photocopy of the registrations contained there in.
- The application for the creative proposal for developing production shall be submitted to the project relating to the proposal and its activity. If the proposal is applicable to many projects, the application shall be submitted to the ministry or to the competent administration.
- The application shall contain a description of the proposal supported by the necessary documents.
- The party to which the application is submitted shall send within ten days a notice to the applicant accepting his application for examination or asking him to complete the documents.
- The party to which the application is submitted should take within one month a decision accepting or rejecting the proposal, and indicate the reasons therefore, if such party is the same project to which the proposal is related, and within two months if the party is a ministry or an administration.
- The applicant may oppose the decision within one month of notifying him thereof, and the party to which the application is submitted shall decide on this opposition within one month of its submission.
Section 3 Effects of Registration
The inventor for whom the inventor's rights are decided may request granting him a patent of invention pertains to him and arranging a monopoly for him on the invention.
The patent shall be granted for fifteen years calculated as from the date of the application submission. After that , the invention shall be the ownership of the state.
Third parties shall be prohibited from using the invention without the consent of the patent owner.
A patent of invention may not be granted to the personnel working in the competent parties concerned with patents, whether they themselves have submitted the
- A person who used the invention independently of the inventor within the boundaries of Yemen before submitting his application, as well as who made the necessary arrangements for this purpose shall have the right to use the invention in future without paying a remuneration, and the judicial authorities shall decide on a dispute relating to this issue.
- Such a right shall not be transferable except with the project, which makes benefit of it.
- The patent owner may grant a license to use the invention or completely relinquish the patent.
- Relinquishment or granting a license should be made in writing.
- The regulations shall regulate standard contracts for granting the license.
- If no agreement is reached with the patent owner in respect of granting a license under reasonable conditions, a person who wishes to use the invention may submit an application to the court for granting him a license to use the invention according to conditions determined by the court.
- If the invention is of great importance to the state, and no agreement is reached with the patent owner in respect of relinquishing the patent or granting a license, the state may at a resolution by the Council of Ministers purchase the patent forcibly.
All license contracts for the patents of invention shall be subject to the approval of the competent parties before contracting for them, whether these contracting parties are governmental or non governmental.
The judicial authorities shall decide on the dispute in relation to attributing an invention to its maker and the participation in an invention, as well as in relation to priority in a creative proposal for developing production if the dispute is not resolved administratively.
1. The court, at the request of any person, shall decide that an invention patent is null in the following cases:
- If the substantive conditions are not satisfied.
- If an application for a patent had been previously submitted.
- If it is revealed that the applicant has usurped the elements of the invention from the efforts of another person. In this case, the person whose efforts were usurped may request transferring the patent to him.
2. The decision that a patent is null shall result in its cancellation retroactively. The decision, when it becomes unobjectionable should be recorded on the margin of the patent registration and should be announced according to the procedures specified in the regulations.
Chapter 2 Industrial & Trade Marks and Industrial Drawings & Designs
Section 1 Industrial & Trade Marks
1] Substantive Conditions
- An industrial or trademark is the one taken as a sign to distinguish the products of an industrial, agricultural or commercial project, or to indicate the services of a project.
- Elements of a mark.
- A mark consists of one element or more, which is either a drawing, expression, shape, object or other things.
- The mark may consist of a certain drawing, such as lines, inscriptions, pictures and symbol, or from specific terms, such as letters, figures, words and names.
- The mark may be composed of the shape of a distinctive object, even if this object is the outer covering of the products.
A mark shall not be separated from the products or services which it
- A mark may not be accepted for registration unless it is actually prepared for use.
- A mark may not be registered except for a production or service project.
- The public sector's bodies and institutions may register a mark for controlling the products or services of the units attached to them as regards the source of products, elements of their composition and the method of their manufacture or characteristics, or as regards the type of services or any other characteristic to indicate making control and examination.
- A collective mark may not be disposed of except with a license from the concerned minister.
- A mark devoid of any distinguishing characteristic shall not be accepted.
- The same shall also apply if the mark consists of shapes imposed by nature or by the function of products or services, or if it consists of a sign used in trade to determine products or services, or from the indication of a common name of products