The new Maltese Trademarks Act, Act XVI of
2000, came into
force on 1 January 2001.
With this Act, new provisions regulating
situations of non-use of a TM came into force. These new sections provide
that registration may be revoked on various grounds, one of which is
If within the period of five years following
the date of completion of the registration procedure,
a trademark has not been put to genuine use
in Malta, by the proprietor or
with his consent, in relation to the goods or services for which it is
registered, and there are no proper reasons for such non-use; or
use has been suspended for an uninterrupted
period of five years, and there are no proper reasons for such non-use; or
in consequence of acts or inactivity of the
proprietor, it has become the common name in the trade for a product or
service for which it is registered,
then such TM may be revoked by an
application for revocation may be made by writ of summons before the First
Hall, Civil Court by any person.
The law provides that use of a trademark
includes the use in a form differing in such elements which do not alter
the distinctive character of the mark in the form in which it was
registered, and use in Malta includes affixing the trademark to goods or
to the packaging of goods in Malta solely for export purposes.
Since the Act came into force in 2001, the
period of 'non-use' of any trademarks registered before that date would
have commenced on the entry into force of the Act and the 5 years will
elapse in January 2006.
Our IP Division would like to advice
associates and TM owners that if they are not satisfying this new '5-year
use' requirement in Malta, their TM could be revoked by any interested
From now onwards, beware of the 5 year