Change in Legal Nature? Simplified Procedure Starts Tomorrow

June 30, 2017

The first of several important amendments to the Madrid System’s Common Regulations will take effect tomorrow, making it easier for holders to introduce changes concerning their legal nature.

What’s new?

Starting July 1, the holder of an international registration can add or update its legal nature as recorded by WIPO (e.g. limited liability company, cooperative, corporation) using the same form required for a standard name or address change (Form MM9 - available as of July 1). A change in the territory where the legal entity is organized can also be requested using the form’s new section 4 (below).

In the past, a holder’s legal nature and the territory under which this (legal entity) holder is organized could only be indicated in an international application, subsequent designation or in a request for change in ownership (Form MM5). 

Holders will now be able to introduce or change information concerning their legal nature, as well as request changes to the name and address on record with WIPO, using a single Form MM9.

Potential cost-saving benefit for holders

This new streamlined procedure could also help reduce costs for holders whose business name and/or address also changes as a result of the change in legal nature or territory. Regardless of the number of registrations in a holder’s portfolio, the cost for submitting these changes on or after July 1 will be 150 Swiss francs in total (provided that all changes are requested at the same time using form MM9).

The amendment, which appears in Rule 25 (Request for Recording) of the Common Regulations, has also resulted in consequential changes to the text of Rules 27(1)(a) and (b) and 32(1)(a)(vii), along with an update to the Schedule of Fees (item 7.4).  These changes were adopted by the Madrid Union Assembly during its fiftieth session in 2016.

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