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The Hamon Act of March 17, 2014: An Innovative Protection for Regional Industrial Expertise

Home > Intellectual Property in France | Published 2015-07-16

Lawyers now have a new basis for protecting regional industrial crafts. The INPI will now be in charge of assigning geographic indications to products according to specific criteria. Any attempt to undermine or circumvent this new process will be considered an act of infringement. Picovschi Layers will explain the Hamon Law of March 17, 2014, which expands what lawyers can do in the fight against counterfeiting.

The creation of geographical indications: a new strategy to protect your craft

A geographical indication is “the name of a geographic area or a specific place which serves to designate a product (that is not agricultural, food, or land/sea based), which is native and has a specific quality, reputation, or other characteristics that are essentially attributes of its geographical origin.”

These are intended to protect national and local industrial crafts, preserving their heritage and protecting their reputation.

The INPI is in charge, following legislation that went into effect in the summer of 2014, and it gets to decide whether or not to grant a craft and/or product a geographical indication. It is advisable to hire a knowledgeable industrial property attorney to help write and prepare the application. The products have to meet a very specific set of qualifications.

Obtaining a geographical indication is important in case of infringement proceedings, as well as to block trademark registration of the geographical indication, with the help of a lawyer. A lawyer will also help you perform prior-art research and advise you on the best strategy for protecting your creations and your craft.

New ways to defend and promote your local, community heritage

Before the Hamon Act, local communities could apply for annulment of a trademark infringing their image, fame, or name only once the mark had been registered and an injury had been suffered.

Now, lawyers may oppose a trademark application that exploits a community to prevent damage in advance.

Communities are now entitled to more protections of their heritage and have the opportunity to enhance their image themselves.

The Hamon Law of March 17, 2014 has strengthened the protection of local craft, regional and national, by including stronger provisions on industrial property. Our lawyers will work hard to help you claim, protect, and secure your rights.

This article is available online for public information purposes. It is updated regularly, as needed. Due to the constant evolution of the laws and the legal system, we cannot guarantee that the information in this article is still applicable. We invite you to contact us with any legal questions or concerns you have regarding this topic at +33 1 56 79 11 00. In no way can this firm be held liable for articles that contain inaccuracies or are now out of date.

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