The concept of protecting trademarks, patents and samples has a long history. The first patent infringement trial in Germany took place in Nuremberg back in 1593. “Modern” patent law was established in the 1870s, along with the term. In other words, the terminology dates back to a time when quills and ink pots were used to write on paper.
E-files make registration more efficient
Despite this long tradition, digitalisation is now finding its way in the world of trademark and patent protection too. So, if you haven’t yet registered your brand because the paperwork put you off, take note: From now on, the whole process is a lot more convenient. In March 2015, the German Patent and Trademark Office (DPMA) introduced E-files for trademark applications. The authority, which has offices in both Munich and Jena, now carries out the entire process electronically. Everything runs digitally without media discontinuities.
Ideal for international communications
The office expects the E-files to shorten processing and notification times – something that is certain to please applicants. And the E-files really are moving things up a gear: They fulfil the conditions for the electronic transfer of all relevant files to courts. And that is not all: The international registration of a trademark runs noticeably more smoothly too, as the DPMA is now able to exchange data with the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) digitally.
More transparency and greater accessibility
The conversion had been planned for a long time: It is part of the German government’s eGovernment Initiative. This initiative saw the DPMA first switch the processing of property rights for patents and samples to digital back in 2011. During the course of this year it should become possible to research all registered trademarks online.