All trademark registrations filed prior to the coming into force of Rwanda Law 31/2009 on the Protection of Intellectual Property (“the Law”) are scheduled for renewal in 2019.
The new Law, which is dated 26 October 2009, came into force following its publication on 14 December 2009. The provisions of the new Law require all trade marks filed under the previous arrangements to be renewed 10 years after the new Law came into force. Originally, the Registry advised that the renewal date would be 26 October 2019, and for a number of renewals filed early the Registry have issued certificates based on this information.
More recently, the Registry have clarified that the renewal due date of old Law cases is 14 December 2019 (based on the date of publication), and have requested that certificates issued with the October date be returned for correction.
Given the volume of cases that will be due for renewal on the same date, we are expecting some delays at the Registry during that period. We would encourage clients to proceed with the renewal of such cases early and can confirm that the term of renewal will not be shortened. Cases filed for renewal at this time will be renewed until 14 December 2029.