Changes of applicant for pending trademarks and patents based on assignment, merger, change of name of the applicant and change of address are now permitted by the Venezuelan Patent and Trademark Office (VPTO).

The VPTO published significant changes in Official Bulletin N° 546 relating to Applicant Changes and Reckless Oppositions starting on April 09, 2014.

In order to admit such proceedings, it will be necessary to attach the required original documents, or certified copies, that support the changes as well as the power of attorney duly granted by the last owner in the chain of changes. Also, for the already pending notifications filed before the VPTO, a complementary confirmation writ must be filed attaching the required documentation in order to be accepted.

In our oppinion this decision is beneficial as it is no longer necessary to await until the trademark/patent is granted to make those changes.

Regarding Reckless Oppositions, the VPTO has established that those lacking legal basis pursuant to such foreseen in the current Industrial Property Law will be declared inadmissible and as such will be published in the Bulletin of Industrial Property.

We believe this to be an important decision due to the large amount of reckless oppositions filed by individuals with the mere objective to detain the trademark application procedure.