Stop Infringers at the Moroccan Borders with the Assistance of TAG-Legal Expertise


  • Stop Infringers at the Moroccan Borders with the Assistance of TAG-Legal Expertise
  • Source : TAG-Legal News

By Ayman Ghonemi
TAG-Legal Arab Countries Office
Talal Abu-Ghazaleh Legal (TAG-Legal)

RABAT- Business owners spend huge efforts and money to create their unique trademarks and sustain their reputation in the markets. Undoubtedly, they shall seek a comprehensive plan to ensure the access of original goods to the markets and to combat any infringement. To achieve that purpose, TAG-Legal advises trademark owners to adopt a plan that monitors markets from within and at the borders through Customs recordation.

• General Overview
Custom’s recordation is an efficient way to reinforce the protection of trademarks or logos against any unauthorized importation of goods bearing trademarks or logos identical or similar to the owner’s trademarks through borders.
When the Customs spot any infringing product, it shall suspend the same from being released to the market and shall inform the registered owner immediately, or his/her agent, via a letter  regarding the existence of the suspected products. The owner will have the right then to take the appropriate legal action against the suspected goods as explained through this article.

It is worth mentioning that such protection requires prior registration for the trademark before the Office Marocain de la Propriété Industrielle et Commerciale (OMPIC) (i.e. the Moroccan Trademark Office), to allow the right owner of registering his/her trademark before the Customs and stop infringing shipments..
Aside from the registration, the applicant will be required to provide other documents (e.g. a POA, the company’s extract, etc.), noting that the said documents must be translated through a sworn translator (i.e. a translator chosen by the Court) either to French or Arabic.

• Legal Procedures

In case the owner receives a notification from the Customs of a suspected infringement, he/she has the right, as per Article 203 of the Trademark Law No. 17 of 1997, to submit an injunction before the Commercial Court
President of the Court would issue a court order appointing a court bailiff to visit the port where the goods are detained in order to conduct a descriptive seizure, count the stock available, and obtain the bill of lading.
Thereafter, the actual substantive lawsuit (i.e. an anti-counterfeiting action) before the Court should be lodged within 30 days as from date of execution of the court order, based on the bailiff’s report relating to the summary procedure of descriptive seizure operation.

During which the owner will aim to order the infringer to cease the importation, the commercialization of the trademark in question, request the destruction of the counterfeit products at the expense of the infringer, and pay a compensation for damages and prejudice which has been caused by this importation to the right owner.
If you have further inquiries on Customs recordation and protection in Morocco, please contact TAG-Legal at: nvz@gzt-ovtzo.xln

This article is intended for general information purposes only and is not considered as a legal consultation. You need to consult an attorney to protect your trademark.

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