Although commercial disputes can be resolved through court litigation, with increasing frequency, parties are submitting such disputes to alternative dispute resolution (ADR) procedures, such us mediation and arbitration.
In December 2018, the Intellectual Property Office of Trinidad and Tobago (TTIPO) and the WIPO entered into a collaboration through the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to make available ADR options, in particular mediation, for intellectual property (IP) and technology disputes in Trinidad and Tobago and the region, through the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (WIPO Center).
Parties can refer most contractual and non-contractual commercial disputes to WIPO ADR procedures. Such disputes may also relate to IP rights (copyright, trademarks, patents, designs, software and trade secrets), technology and domain names.
For example, IP contractual disputes may arise in licensing agreements, distribution agreements, franchising agreements, broadcasting agreements, research and development agreements, technology transfer agreements, software-related agreements, among others. Non-contractual disputes may be related to infringement of IP rights.
TTIPO offers a voluntary mediation option to parties to resolve trademark oppositions pending before TTIPO through mediation under the WIPO Mediation Rules.
The WIPO Mediation option offered by TTIPO may be especially advantageous for international parties seeking to settle related disputes in multiple jurisdictions.
The WIPO Mediation option is available throughout the entire dispute resolution process before TTIPO.
Mediation is an informal process in which a neutral intermediary, the mediator, assists the parties in reaching a settlement of their dispute, based on the parties' respective business interests. The mediator cannot impose a decision. The settlement agreement has the force of a contract.
The TTIPO supports the WIPO Mediation Pledge, a WIPO initiative to promote the use of mediation for IP and technology disputes.
a) In the absence of a mediation agreement, a party that wishes to propose submitting a dispute to mediation (Unilateral Request) shall:
i. Complete and sign the Request for WIPO Mediation.
ii. Send the Request to the WIPO Center by email to firstname.lastname@example.org, and to the other party.
iii. Upon receipt of the Request, the WIPO Center would be available to provide information on the WIPO Mediation process to the other party. Should the other party be interested in participating in the WIPO Mediation process, such party shall sign and send the Request to the WIPO Center by email to email@example.com.
b) If both parties agree to refer a dispute to WIPO Mediation (Mediation Agreement), the parties shall:
i. Complete and sign the Request for WIPO Mediation.
ii. Send the Request to the WIPO Center by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The parties may agree in relation to the appointment of the mediator. Otherwise, the appointment shall take place in accordance with Article 7 of the WIPO Mediation Rules. The WIPO Center maintains a list of specialized mediators, including from Trinidad and Tobago. The WIPO Center will confirm the mediator’s impartiality and independence before appointment (Article 8 of the WIPO Mediation Rules).
The mediation shall be conducted in the manner agreed by the parties (Article 10 of the WIPO Mediation Rules). If, and to the extent that, the parties have not made such agreement, the mediator shall, in accordance with these Rules, determine the manner in which the mediation shall be conducted. Mediation meetings may take place in person or remotely, via teleconferencing or videoconferencing facilities, at the parties’ choice. The mediation will be confidential (Articles 15 to 18 of the WIPO Mediation Rules).
Reduced administration and mediator’s fees apply in light of the TTIPO-WIPO collaboration.
|WIPO's Administrative Fee||Mediator's Fees|
|USD 50 per party*||USD 100 per party (includes 4 hours of preparation and mediation).
Additional hours: USD 50 per hour per party.
* To be paid after all parties agree to refer the dispute to WIPO Mediation. The filing of a Request for Mediation in accordance with Article 4 of the WIPO Mediation Rules is not subject to administration fees. If the parties agree to continue with the mediation process, the administration fee required by the WIPO Center's Schedule of Fees and Costs will be applicable.
Payment Details Information
1. Payments to the WIPO Center shall be made by any of the following means only:
Bank transfer: Payments in USD – WIPO Account IBAN CH6804835063039782000, Credit Suisse, CH-1211 Geneva 70, Switzerland, SWIFT Code CRESCHZZ80A.
Credit card (for more information please contact email@example.com).
2. Payments by check or in cash will not be accepted.
3. All bank charges, transfer fees or other amounts that may be levied in connection with a payment made to the Center shall be the responsibility of the party making the payment.
A procedure in which the parties submit their dispute to one or more arbitrators, for a binding and final decision (award).
A procedure in which the parties submit a specific matter (e.g., technical question, valuation of IP assets, establishment of royalty rates) to one or more experts who make a determination on the matter.
Procedures available to resolve disputes related to the bad-faith registration of domain names corresponding to third-party trademarks.
|WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center||Intellectual Property Office of Trinidad and Tobago|
|Chemin des Colombettes 34
1211 Geneva 20
T + 4122 338 8247
F + 4122 740 3700
Office of the Attorney General and Ministry of Legal Affairs