Intellectual Property

Intellectual Property

What is intellectual property?

There are 3 types of propertyin Thai law.

1. Movable property (Personal property) refers tothe property that is movable, for example goods, cloth, car etc.

2. Immovable property (Real estate) refers tothe property of any individual and all structures integrated with or affixed to the land, including house, building, canal etc.

3. Intellectual property (IP) refers to intangible creations of the human intellect.

The Importance of Intellectual Property

Intellectual property is a type of property which can be used for economic benefits like other types of property. Intellectual Property Right (IPR) is an exclusive right of the owner(s). The purpose of IP is to reward devoted creators or inventors who conductthe research that contributes to the world development and society even after the termination of IP.

IP law is very important and specifically advantageous to Thai people, especially nowadays since Thai people are not only consumersbut also potential creators of their own IP. This can help reducethe import of technology from foreign countries, increase economic competitiveness, establish credibility with International counties, and promote more investment in Thailand.

Types of Intellectual Property

1. Copyright

LawCopyright Act B.E.2537 (A.D.1994) as amended by Copyright Act (No. 2) B.E. 2558 (A.D. 2015) Copyright Act (No. 3) B.E. 2558 (A.D. 2015) Copyright Act (No. 4) B.E. 2561 (A.D. 2018)
Definition1.Original works of authorship 2.Expression of Ideas 3.Works of authorship in 9 categories which are not contrary to the laws, public order or good morals
What are protected?Works of authorship in the categories of literary work, dramatic work,artistic work, musical work, audiovisual work, cinematographic work, sound recording, broadcasting work,or any other works in the literary, scientific or artistic domain, whatever may be the mode or form of its expression.
Protection termsCopyright by virtue of this Act endures for the life of the author and 50 years after the death of the author.
How to be protectedautomatic protection, no registration or Copyright Notification at Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Commerce

2. Industrial Property

   2.1 Patent

LawPatent Act B.E. 2522 (A.D. 1979) as amended by Patent Act (No. 2) B.E. 2535 (A.D. 1992) Patent Act (No. 3) B.E. 2542.(A.D. 1999)
DefinitionA patent is a document issued to grant protection for an invention or a product design.
What are protected? A patent for an invention 1. Novelty
2. Inventive Step
3.Industrial Application  A patent for product design 1. Novelty
2. Manufacturing or Industrial Application
Protection termsA patent for an invention 20 years from the date of filing of the application in the country, or A patent right can be maintained by paying patent fees on an annual basis, starting with the fees for the fifth year. However, if the patent fee for a certain year is not paid within the deadline, the patent right will be deemed to have expired.  A patent for Product Design 10 years from the date of filing of the application in the country, or A patent right can be maintained by paying patent fees on an annual basis, starting with the fees for the fifth year. However, if the patent fee for a certain year is not paid within the deadline, the patent right will be deemed to have expired.
How to be protectedRegistration at Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Commerce

2.2 Petty Patent

LawPatent Act B.E. 2522 (A.D. 1979) as amended by Patent Act (No. 3) B.E. 2542. (A.D. 1999)
DefinitionA patent is a document issued to grant protection for an invention.
What are protected?1. Novelty
2. Industrial Application
Protection terms6 years from the date of filing of the application in the country,  and can be extended for 2 periods, each period shall be valid for 2 years (10 years totally), or A petty patent right can be maintained by paying patent fees on an annual basis, starting with the fees for the fifth year. However, if the petty patent fee for a certain year is not paid within the deadline, the petty patent right will be deemed to have expired.
How to be protectedRegistration at Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Commerce

2.3 Trademark

LawTrademark Act B.E. 2534 (A.D. 1991) as amended by Trademark Act (No. 2) B.E. 2543 (A.D. 1999) Trademark Act (No. 3) B.E. 2559. (A.D. 2016)
DefinitionBrands (Photograph, Drawing, Invented Device, Logo, Name, Word, Phrase, Letter, Numeral, Signature, Combination of Colors, Figurative Element, Sound or Combination thereof) for Trademark, Service Mark, Certification Mark, and Collective Mark
What are protected?To be registrable, a trademark must: 1. be distinctive 2. not be prohibited under this Act 3. not be the same as or similar to a trademark registered by another person
Protection terms10 years from the date of registration, and may be renewed every 10 years.
How to be protectedRegistration at Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Commerce

2.4 Plants Varieties Protection

LawPlant Varieties Protection Act, B.E. 2542 (A.D.1999)
DefinitionTo promote breeding, develop new plant varieties in addition to the existing ones, promote Thai agriculture, conserve and develop plant species utilization and maintenance of the community, and establish Plant Variety Protection Fundto be a source of funds to support and assist enterprises related to preservation, research, and development of plant variety.
What are protected?1. New plant variety
2. Local domestic plant variety
3. General domestic plant variety
4. Forest plant variety
Protection termsNew plant variety
12 years for plant variety which bears fruits after being cultivated for less than two years. 17 years for plant variety which bears fruits after being cultivated for over two years. 27 years for plant variety which its parts can be used after being cultivated for over two years. Local domestic plant variety The local administrative organization, farmer group, or co-operative that receives the certificate of registration of the local domestic plant variety is the right holder on behalf of the community.  The validity of the certificate of a local domestic plant variety registration may be extended for 10 years each time.
How to be protectedRegistration at Department of Agriculture, Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives

   

2.5 Integrated Circuit

LawProtection of Layout-Designs of Integrated Circuits Act B.E.2543 (A.D.2000)
DefinitionAdesigned electriccircuit (or a layout design), and the mask (or mask work) which is a model to create a layout design of integrated circuit is categorized as a product under protection of this law.
What are protected?1. A layout-design which is created by the designer him/herself and is not commonplace among the integrated circuits industry. 2. A layout-design which is newly created by the designer by arranging elements, interconnections of layout-designs or integrated circuits which are in commonplace among the integrated circuits industry in a way which results in the layout-design which is not commonplace in the integrated circuit industry.
Protection terms10 years from the date of filing of the application in the country.
How to protectRegistration at Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Commerce

 

2.6 Trade Secret

LawTrade Secrets Act B.E. 2545(A.D.2002) as amended by Trade Secrets Act (No. 2) B.E. 2558 (A.D.2015)
DefinitionTrade information not yet publicly known or not yet accessible by persons who are normally connected with the information.
What are protected?Trade information with its secrecy and that the controller of the trade secrets has taken appropriate measures to maintain the secrecy.
Protection termsTrade secrets can be protected for an unlimited period of time as long as the information remains undisclosed.
How to be protectedNo registration. Protected without any procedural formalities

2.7 Geographical Indications (GI)

LawGeographical Indications Protection Act B.E. 2546 (A.D. 2003) 
DefinitionAn indicating-symbol or indicating-sign or indicating-mark which is attached on the product  to let the consumer know the followings : 1. From where (specific geographical origin) the product’s origin is located. 2. What reputation, characteristics and qualities of the product is essentially relating to such place of origin.
What to be protected– Direct Geographical Indication (Bang Mod Orange, Swiss Watch)
– Indirect Geographical Indication (Eiffel Tower for Paris, The Great Wall for China)
Protection termsThe protection of such geographical indication shall take effect as from the date of filing an application for registration.
How to be protectedRegistration at Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Commerce

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