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June 22, 2018

Custom authorities no longer tasked with examining Patent infringement claims

As per the Intellectual Property Rights (Imported Goods) Enforcement Rules, 2007 (“IPR (Imported Goods) Enforcement Rules, 2007) in conjunction with the Customs Act, 1962 trademark rights holders can register their trademark with customs houses to stop the import of infringing and counterfeit products. However, as per the amendment vide the Intellectual Property Rights (Imported Goods) Enforcement Amendment Rules, 2018 notified [REGD. NO. D. L.-33004/99 G.S.R. 581 (E)], Indian custom authorities are no longer tasked with examining patent infringement claims, i.e. patents have been excluded from the ambit of the IPR (Imported Goods) Enforcement Rules 2007 and right-holders thereof will no longer be able to protect their patents from being infringed through importation of counterfeited products. Further, the amendment will oblige non-patent right-holder to notify the Commissioner of Customs of any amendment, cancellation, suspension or reaction that concern Intellectual Property rights. Customs authorities have also been vested with powers to cancel patent registrations from its records based on the order passed by the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB), as per the new amendment to the IPR (Imported Goods) Enforcement Rules, 2007.

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