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BBEE Status: We have received our Level 2 Accreditation for 2013

Hahn & Hahn voted IP Boutique Law Firm of the Year in South Africa 2013
Janusz Luterek has been voted one of the worlds top1000 IP attorneys

OAPI PATENT REGISTRATIONS

OAPI is the African Intellectual Property Organisation for French-speaking Africa. The member countries are Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, and Togo. Please note that it is not possible to obtain protection in any of these countries other than by way of an OAPI application.

OAPI is a member of the International Convention and of the PCT.

The deadline for PCT Regional Phase Entry is 30 months from the priority date.

The requirements for filing a non-PCT application in OAPI are as follows:

(a) Power of Attorney (simply signed) - can be late filed within 3 months of notification;
(b) Specification, claims, drawings, and abstract in English or French - required on the day of filing;
(c) Assignment of Invention - can be late filed within 6 months;
(d) Assignment of Priority Rights - can be late filed within 6 months; and
(e) Certified priority document with sworn and verified English or French translation, see notes below - can be late filed within 6 months.

With respect to item (e) above, the translation of the priority document must be accompanied by a signed declaration of the official translator which also carries a stamp or a seal. In the event that the translator does not have a stamp or a seal, notarised translations have in the past been accepted by OAPI.

The requirements for filing a PCT application in OAPI are as follows:

(i) Power of Attorney (simply signed) - can be late filed within 3 months of notification;
(ii) Specification, claims, drawings, and abstract in English or French - required on the day of filing;
(iii) Assignment of Priority Rights - can be late filed within 6 months;
(iv) Copy of PCT International advertisement - required on day of filing;
(v) Copy of International Search Report - can be late filed, no set deadline; and
(vi) Copy of International Preliminary Examination Report - can be late filed, no set deadline.

An OAPI application automatically designates all member states. The cost of filing an OAPI patent application is relatively high. At present, we estimate that the cost of filing in OAPI will be between about US$ 4400.00 and US$ 4600.00 (including publication fees) for the first 10 claims and the first 10 pages of the specification. This excludes translation fees (if required), priority claim surcharges, surplus claim charges, surplus page charges, and outstanding annuity fees payable upon filing.

To the above must be added a charge of about US$ 270.00 for the first Convention claim to priority plus about US$ 170.00 for each additional priority claim.

Please note that exorbitant surcharges for claims in excess of 10 (about US$ 125.00 per claim) are payable and surcharges are also payable on the length of the specification, claims, and drawings (between 11 and 20 pages - about US$ 330.00, between 11 and 30 pages - about US$ 1130.00, between 11 and 40 pages - about US$ 2730.00, and between 11 and 50 pages - about US$ 2950.00; thereafter add about US$ 225.00 for each batch of 10 pages over 50). However, please note that it is possible to file a preliminary amendment to reduce the number of claims so as to reduce such claim surcharges.

Please also note that annuity fees are payable on pending applications, and are payable annually from the first anniversary of the filing date (which is deemed to be the international filing date for PCT applications) at a cost of about US$ 1200.00 per year (for each of the first 5 years).

OAPI DESIGN REGISTRATIONS

OAPI is the African Intellectual Property Organisation for French-speaking Africa. The member countries are Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, and Togo. Please note that it is not possible to obtain protection in any of these countries other than by way of an OAPI application.

OAPI is a member of the International Convention.

The requirements for filing a design application in OAPI are as follows:

(a) Power of Attorney (simply signed) - can be late filed after notification;
(b) 3 sets of formal drawings - required on the day of filing;
(c) Certified priority document with sworn and verified English or French translation, see notes below - can be late filed within 3 months.

With respect to item (c) above, the translation of the priority document must be accompanied by a signed declaration of the official translator which also carries a stamp or a seal. In the event that the translator does not have a stamp or a seal, notarised translations have in the past been accepted by OAPI.

An OAPI application automatically designates all member states. The cost of filing an OAPI design application is between about US$ 2300.00 and US$ 2500.00. To the above must be added a charge of about US$ 260.00 per Convention claim to priority.

Furthermore, it is possible to file a single application covering up to 100 variants of a design which belong to the same class of international application or the same range of articles. Surcharges of about US$ 300.00 for the first variant plus US$ 75.00 for each additional variant will then be applicable.

OAPI TRADEMARK REGISTRATIONS

African Intellectual Property Organisation (AIPO/OAPI) - The member States are Benin, Burkina-Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Togo

One application covers all member states. It is not possible to obtain national registrations or renewal in any one member state.

1. Filing requirements

1.1 Full name, street address and description of the applicant (including trading style, if any, and state/country of incorporation, if incorporated).
1.2 List of goods and/or services.
1.3 A simply signed French/English power of attorney.
1.4 Clear print of device mark
1.5 If priority is claimed: Certified copy of home application/registration.

2. Classification

2.1 The 45 classes of the International Classification (Nice Agreement) of goods and services are followed.
2.2 Multiclass - Yes
2.3 Goods and service classes must be filed separately to obtain the 3 class fees.

3. General

3.1 Duration : 10 years from date of application and renewable for further periods of 10 years.
3.2 Use : Non-use of the trade mark in any one of the member states within 5 years from the application date may render the mark vulnerable to expungement.
3.3 Marking : Not compulsory but advisable.
3.4 Licenses : Compulsory.
3.5 Assignments of applications are permitted.

4. Costs

41a Application: 1 trade mark in 1 - 3 classes: $1960, additional classes above 3 filed simultaneously $380 each ** additional surcharge for colour device: $195 per mark ***
4.1b Additional marks filed simultaneously: $1800 each
4.1c Claiming priority: $310
4.2 Assignment: First trade mark $1250, additional trade marks filed simultaneously $1000 each.
4.3 Change of name or address: First trade mark/class $1080, additional trade marks filed simultaneously $930 each
4.4 Licenses: First trade mark $1230, additional trade marks $960 each
4.5a Renewal: First trade mark/class $2000, additional classes renewed simultaneously $440 each
4.5b Renewal: additional marks renewed simultaneously: $1960 each
4.5c Renewal: Late renewal fine: $580 4.6 Searches: 1 mark in 1 class: $500; additional classes $390 each

*** Please note: Separate applications are required for Goods & Service classes

*** Above quotations exclude courier charges ***