Over the past year the Brazilian courts and the Brazilian Patent and Trademark Office have been adapting to the new reality brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. In light of these judicial and administrative changes, the Brazilian IP landscape is becoming increasingly favourable for entrepreneurs and companies. While Brazil still has a long way to go, the government's pursuit of greater effectiveness in its judicial and IP systems is commendable.
A patent dispute about a spray used to mark the distance between the defenders and the ball when a free kick is taken in football is ongoing in Brazil. The spray's inventor filed an infringement action against the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA), which was rejected on the grounds that the inventor had not proved that the products used by FIFA corresponded to infringed copies of his products or that any damage had been caused. The inventor has appealed this decision.
In recent years, the Brazilian Patent and Trademark Office has taken actions to improve IP protection policies. As such, it recently published the Guidelines for Examining Patent Applications Involving Computer-Implemented Inventions. The new guidelines were long overdue, considering that technology and intelligent systems (eg, the Internet of Things and AI) are becoming increasingly integrated into everyday life.
Although Diego Maradona assigned all of his trademark rights to Sattvica before his death, the Brazilian Patents and Trademarks Office rejected the company's application to register the trademark MARADONA in Brazil based on the Trademark Law. This article discusses the registration of proper names as trademarks and explores the measures that parties can take to ensure that the legacy and goodwill associated with their intellectual property is preserved after their death.
The National Health Surveillance Agency recently published four guidelines on its prior consent procedure, which all pharmaceutical patent applications in Brazil must undergo before the Brazilian Patent and Trademark Office (BRPTO) conducts the technical examination. However, applicants should remember that the final decision on the patentability of pharmaceutical patent applications is made exclusively by the BRPTO.