Trademarks in Laos
Applications can be filed for registration of trademarks, service marks, collective marks and figurative marks. Like other countries, Laos adopts the International Classification of Goods and Services under the Nice Agreement. Multi-class applications are not accepted in Laos.
Foreign individuals or entities can file trademark applications in Laos if they have legal presence in Laos, for example representative offices. Otherwise, applications must be filed through Lao trademark agents.
In compliance with the “first-to-file” principle, Laos grants certificate of trademark registration to the person/entity who first files the application in the country. Formality and substantive examination shall be conducted for all trademark applications, within 6 months from the filing date. Upon expiry of such period, if the trademark is found to be of inherent distinctiveness and distinguishable from earlier filed trademarks, the Lao Trademark Department shall grant Certificate of Registration to the mark.
Documents Required for Filing
To file a trademark application in Laos, the following information and documents are required:
(i) Full name, address and nationality of the applicant;
(ii) Trademark specimens (20 specimens) with the size not larger than 100mm x 100 mm and not smaller than 50 x 50 mm. Colours can be claimed for the marks provided that the trademark specimens are in colour. In case that the trademark includes characters not of English, translation or transliteration of the characters is required;
(iii) A list of goods/services and the International Classification of respective goods/services (if known);
(iv) Priority data for claiming priority right under the Paris Convention (if any), including application number, priority date, country. Certified copy of the priority application and the English translation can be submitted later, after filing;
(v) A notarized Power of Attorney from the Applicant. One notarized Power of Attorney can be used for filing several trademarks provided that it is a general one.
Protection and Renewal
The term of the trademark protection in Laos is 10 years from the registration date based on the Decision on Trademark No. 0753, dated 20/9/2012. Trademark registration is renewable for unlimited times, each of 10 years.
The trademark owner shall be obliged to use the trademark in Laos. Trademark registration may be cancelled on non-use basis if the mark under the registration has not been used for five consecutive years. For cases of recordal of any change in respect of the registered mark, such as ownership change, change of the name and address of the trademark owner, amendment of list of goods, or of mark, etc., Affidavit of Use shall be required for submission. Non-use with justifiable reasons may be acceptable for the recordal the trademark owner change and amendments.
Any changes in respect of the ownership of the registered mark or registered mark is required to be recorded in Laos to have the change effected.