Patents, Trade Marks & Copyright
Smit & Van Wyk deals exclusively with trade marks, industrial designs and patent pct applications in South Africa and across Africa as a whole. Our qualified patent and trade mark lawyers have the knowledge, experience and resources to give expert legal advice regarding your patent and trade mark portfolio. We can assist with the filing, registration, prosecution and enforcement thereof. Our firm serves as a portal to the African continent for many foreign associates and multinational corporations. Smit & Van Wyk acts as a patent agent as well as a trade mark agent for the whole African continent (including OAPI and ARIPO). We also file trade marks, designs and patent pct applications for our South African clients into foreign markets, while also assisting our foreign clients who wish to file in South Africa or the rest of Africa.
At Smit & Van Wyk, it is our mission to provide unparalleled service to our treasured clients by developing dynamic solutions which are tailored to suit individual Intellectual Property needs. The key to achieving this lies with our vibrant people, who are eager to go beyond the call of duty. This can-do attitude is our legacy, setting us apart from the rest. As we continue to grow, we look forward to sharing this legacy with clients and employees alike.
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Smit & Van Wyk provides a full range of IP legal services in all African countries where Intellectual Property protection is available. We can provide information on the filing requirements in each of the African countries and can also offer information on the various regional IP organisations such as ARIPO, OAPI and the Madrid protocol. We work with a network of trusted and knowledgeable agents to develop the best possible solution to each of our clients’ IP needs in Africa.
Our patent attorneys specialise in the identification, protection, prosecution and enforcement of patents in South Africa and abroad. Our registered patent attorney’s cover a number of technical disciplines, including: mechanical, electrical, electronic and software engineering as well as biotechnology, life sciences, pharmaceuticals and chemical engineering. South Africa is a member of the PCT and Paris Convention treaties. A patent PCT application will ensure that by filing one international patent application, that applicants can simultaneously seek protection for an invention in other PCT member countries. As a patent law firm, our experts litigate on these matters, and further, advise on IP valuation, licencing and related commercialisation aspects. With a passion for development in Africa, our patent department has built a trusted network of African agents over the past decade which allows us to extend these service offerings across the African continent.
Our trade mark department consists of a team of skilled and qualified trade mark attorneys and paralegals who work closely with our clients to build interpersonal relationships and to structure the best bespoke trade mark filing programs suited to the client’s specific needs and requirements. We offer advice on all aspects of trade mark filing, prosecution and litigation across the African continent. South Africa follows the Nice Classification of goods and/or services. The Nice classification assists in filing a trade mark application for the correct goods or services as it is an international standard for the classification of goods and services. There is a total of 45 classes (34 goods classes and 11 service classes). There are 38 African countries that are currently Madrid members. South African has not conceded to the Madrid Protocol.
Copyright comes into existence the moment that a copyrightable work is created in material form. We can assist with the transfer of ownership and copyright enforcement.
Design protection often forms part of a comprehensive Intellectual Property portfolio and protection of designs thus goes hand-in-hand with other forms of IP protection.
A franchise attorney is required to setup the franchise operations manual, franchise agreement and other documentation required to start or buy a franchise.
Plant Breeders’ Rights
Our intellectual property attorneys can assist in the filing, prosecution and enforcement of a plant breeders’ right in South Africa by acting as the duly authorised agent.