Why and how to register a trademark in Haiti

In Haiti, the exclusive rights to a trademark are granted only by registration, as it is a “first-to-file” jurisdiction. However, in exceptional cases, well-known trademark can be protected even if they have not been filed yet.

Trademark applications must be filed with the Intellectual Property Service in the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

If you register a combined trademark (which includes both word elements and figurative elements) in Haiti, the exclusive right to use the trademark is limited to a use of the trademark in the exact configuration or way in which it was filed and registered. If you wish to use the word element of your trademark separately from the logo (or vice versa), it is recommended you register for another trademark including only the word or figurative elements you wish to use and protect separately.

Nevertheless, if a third party eventually intends to register or use a trademark for similar goods or services that includes a primary or distinct part or portion of your trademark, you will have the right to oppose the application based on confusing similarity. 

In Haiti, the opposition period is open for a period of two months starting on the publication date, during which interested third parties may file opposition actions. The probabilities of success for an opposition will vary in each case depending on the circumstances.

If you would like for the figurative or design elements of your trademark to be considered when assessing your trademark for registration in Haiti (Trademark Search Report), contact us directly in order to determine if we may be able to offer this in this jurisdiction. In such cases, prices for service and estimated delivery times may vary.

While a trademark does not need to be in use to register in Haiti, it must then be used continuously and in good faith in order to maintain its validity. Lack of use during the first five years of registration makes it vulnerable to cancellation actions for lack of use. 

Furthermore, during the lifespan of the trademark, declarations of use must be submitted to establish that the trademark is still in use. If those declarations are not submitted in a timely manner, then the registration will lapse. For more information, please refer to our FAQ section below.

Provided that declarations of use have been filed when necessary, registered trademarks in Haiti have a validity of ten years from the registration date and can then be renewed for successive periods of ten years indefinitely, as long as the trademark is still being used. There is a grace period of six (6) months after the expiration of the trademark during which it may still be renewed upon payment of additional fees.

 

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