The rapidly evolving coronavirus pandemic continues to have a significant impact on intellectual property rights holders in Canada and around the world. As noted in our most recent IP bulletin, the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (“CIPO”) recently announced that, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, March 16, 2020 to March 31, 2020 inclusive will be considered “designated days” under the applicable Canadian intellectual property legislation. This means that if a CIPO deadline under the Patent Act, Trademarks Act and/or Industrial Design Act falls on any of these “designated days”, the time period to respond will be extended to the next business day (e.g. April 1st, 2020).
To assist those having or seeking patent rights in Canada, CIPO has now prepared a series of Frequently Asked Questions (“FAQs”) regarding the COVID-19 service interruptions and patent prosecution matters before CIPO. Information on service interruptions with respect to the Trademarks Opposition Board (“TMOB”) can be found here.
CIPO is careful to point out that the answers provided are only a guide and should not be considered legally binding. CIPO recommends that everyone consult a registered patent agent who can advise on any specific situation. Anyone concerned about Canadian patent prosecution deadlines should review all of the FAQs provided on the CIPO website and consult a Canadian patent agent as applicable.
To that end, Fasken’s IP group is taking steps to ensure continuity of our services to our clients over this period, largely by working remotely. Please don’t hesitate to reach out, should you need assistance. In the meantime, we will continue to keep you informed of any developments as they occur.