• Intellectual property framework


    Protection of intellectual property rights is required by the Federal Constitution and by several multilateral treaties. The main statutes in this area are federal statutes. However, in case of litigation, some matters are subject to federal jurisdiction, and others to provincial jurisdiction.

  • Commercial contract framework


    Commercial contracts are governed by the Civil and Commercial Code. This code came into effect in 2015 and it replaces the previous separate Civil Code and Commercial Code. It is part of the federal legislation, but jurisdiction regarding its implementation and litigation resulting thereunder corresponds primarily to the provincial courts.

    The Civil and Commercial Code includes general provisions on contracts, which are applicable to all contractual transactions. These provisions govern matters such as the formation of contracts, offer and acceptance, possible subject matter of contracts, legal formalities, the legal effects of contracts, contract termination and others.

    In addition, the Civil and Commercial Code includes provisions applicable to specific types of contracts, such as sale agreements, leases, franchise agreements and agency agreements. More than 30 types of agreements are subject to specific provisions of this kind. These specially regulated agreements are thus subject to the general rules applicable to contracts –described above – and to the special rules applicable to the relevant type of agreement. Agreements that are not subject to special rules are nevertheless valid, and they are governed primarily by the general contract rules and – to the degree possible – by the rules applicable to analogous specially regulated contracts.

    Other laws include provisions on specific types of commercial contracts. For instance, the Copyright Law includes certain provisions of contracts related to software and to publishing; the Patent Law includes rules on license agreements; and the Insurance Law includes rules on insurance contracts. However, in all these specially regulated contracts, the general contract law rules included in the Civil and Commercial Code are also applicable.

    Commercial contracts with the federal or provincial governments or with other governmental entities are also governed by administrative law. Special rules on contracts with state entities have been included in federal or provincial laws, or have been developed by case law.

  • Copyrights

    Nature of right

    Copyright protects intellectual creations in all fields of science, art and literature. Article 1 of the Copyright Law includes a non-exhaustive list of possible intellectual works protected by copyright. These include, among others, literary and artistic works, music, architectural works and software.

    Copyright protects intellectual expressions, but not ideas. For example, the contents of a book in terms of sentences and other literary expressions are protected by copyright, but the creative idea underlying the book as a whole is not.

    Copyright results from the creation of an intellectual work. Registration is not necessary for copyright to exist, although it is necessary for the exercise of some rights by local authors. Upon creation of a protected work, copyright belongs to the original author or authors, who then may transfer their right, by contract or by the operation of certain legal rules.

    Copyright includes economic and moral rights. Economic rights consist, basically, in the exclusive right to use and exploit the protected work. The Copyright Law lists some of the elements of this exclusive right, such as the right to reproduce the relevant work, to market copies, to prepare derivative works or to have the work performed publicly.

    Moral rights include the so-called “integrity right” – that is, the right to preserve the text, title and other contents of the work, even if property rights on such work have been assigned; the “paternity right” – the author’s right to be named and identified as such together with the work; the “publication right” – the right to decide whether the right will be published; and the “alteration right” – that is, the right to modify the work, even after it has been published. Moral rights belong to the author, and they are generally non-assignable.

    Legal framework

    Copyright law is included in Law 11, 723, as amended. In addition, multiple laws and regulations govern matters such as related rights, publishers' rights and collective management societies.

    Argentina is part of the main multilateral international copyright agreements, such as the Trips Agreement, the Berne Convention and the Rome Convention. The provisions of these agreements are actively enforced by the courts.

    Duration of right

    The general rule is that copyright protection lasts for a term of 70 years, counted as of January 1 of the first year after the death of the author, as well as through the life of the author.

    In the case of work done through cooperation, the 70-year term is computed from the death of the last person who participated in the joint authorship of the work involved.

    In the case of posthumous works, the 70-year term is computed from the death of the author.

    The duration of protection of anonymous works whose copyright belongs to institutions, corporations or legal entities is 50 years from the date of publication of the work.

    Special rules on copyright duration apply to specific types of copyrightable works, such as photographs and cinematographic works.

    Ownership / licenses

    The basic rule is that ownership belongs to the author. Special rules have been developed in connection with special types of works, such as cinematographic works, derivative works and software.

    There are several types of joint ownership. It may apply to works done through cooperation, which imply a creative collaboration between different authors; to collective works, which are those created through the initiative or direction of one or more individuals, who coordinate or direct the efforts of several other individuals to achieve a joint result; and to composite works, which are the result of adding different separate works, each with a possible separate author and owner, into one final result.

    Works created by employees who have been hired for that purpose belong to the employer.

    Copyright may be subject to licenses, generally as part of broader contractual arrangements, such as publishing agreements.

    Remedies for infringement

    Damages may be claimed before civil courts for all types of copyright violation. Registration of works is not necessary, except for local authors, whose rights may be suspended until registration takes place.

    It is also possible to file civil action to prevent further copyright violation and to obtain preliminary remedies, such as injunction, in the course of civil procedures.

    Criminal remedies, particularly fines, are possible but are not frequently applied.

  • Mask works / topographies

    Nature of right

    Mask works and topographies are not separately protected under Argentine law. They may be protected under patent law or by way of confidentiality.

    Legal framework

    Argentina has enacted no specific rules on chip protection. Although Argentina is part of the WTO and has approved the Trips Agreement, it has not yet implemented any rules on chip protection.

    The provisions on chip protection included in the Trips Agreement have not been deemed immediately applicable under Argentine law. In addition, Argentina has not ratified or implemented other multilateral treaties on chip protection, in particular the Treaty of Washington of 1989.

    Semiconductor technology, generally, and topographies, in particular, may be protected under the traditional intellectual property rules applicable to all types of technology, specially patent law and the rules on confidential information. Therefore, matters such as the duration of the relevant rights, ownership and remedies depend on the type of protection used in connection with each specific mask work or topography.

    Duration of right

    Not applicable for this jurisdiction.

    Ownership / licenses

     Not applicable for this jurisdiction.

    Remedies for infringement

    Not applicable for this jurisdiction.

  • Patents

    Nature of right

    Patents are a statutory right. The granting of patents is required by the Argentine Constitution and by different international documents, particularly the Trips Agreement. Patent rights imply an exclusive right to exploit a process or a product. The Argentine Patent Law defines the limits of these exclusive rights, on the basis of the provisions of the Trips Agreement.

    Legal framework

    Patents are governed by the Patent Law – Law 24,481, as amended. In addition, they are governed by the Trips Agreement and by the Paris Convention. Argentina is not a party to the Patent Cooperation Treaty.

    Duration of right

    The basic rule is that patents expire 20 years after the date in which the relevant patent application was filed. Argentina uses a "first to file" system, but it also applies the priority rules derived from the Paris Convention.

    Argentine law provides special rules on compulsory licenses and on patent termination due to lack of exploitation of the patented invention. Compulsory licenses may be granted in case of non-exploitation, competition law violations or sanitary emergencies, among other cases. Patent termination may result when, after a compulsory license was granted for lack of exploitation, no exploitation of the invention takes place for two years after the license was granted.

    Ownership / licenses

    Joint ownership is permissible. The Patent Law includes provisions on the exercise of patent rights by the joint owners. In addition, the Civil and Commercial Code rules on joint property apply to patents.

    The Patent Law includes rules on licenses. Licenses are not exclusive, unless the parties provide otherwise. Competition law rules are applicable to restrictive clauses included in license agreements.

    Remedies for infringement

    The Patent Law provides both civil and criminal law remedies for cases of infringement.

    Civil remedies include the compensation of damages and termination of the infringing activities.

    A complex system of rules for preliminary remedies in patent cases is included in the Patent Law. Generally, suspension of an alleged infringer's exploitation requires a preliminary procedure, with the participation of expert witnesses.

    Criminal procedures and sanctions are rare.

  • Trademarks

    Nature of right

    A trademark may consist of one or more words, with or without conceptual content, drawings, commercial symbols, monograms, engravings, prints, seals, images, stripes, color combinations, letter and number combinations, the special graphics of letters and numbers, advertisement phrases, reliefs, and any other sign with distinctive capacity.

    A trademark is normally protected by means of its registration. However, de facto trademarks, that is those that are used but not registered, are also protected in a more limited way.

    Legal framework

    Trademarks are governed by the Trademark Law – Law 22,362, as amended.

    In addition, trademarks are protected by the rules included in Trips Agreement and in the Paris Convention.

    Duration of right

    Registered trademarks are protected for a period of ten years from the moment of registration. Trademark registration may be renewed indefinitely.

    Registration may be canceled for lack of use during a period of five years. In addition, renewal of registration requires proof of the trademark's prior use.

    Ownership / licenses

    Ownership is acquired by means of registration. However, use of unregistered trademarks may result in certain rights for the user.

    Trademarks may be subject to joint ownership. The Trademark Law and the Civil and Commercial Code provide the rules applicable to these joint ownership relationships.

    Trademark licenses are possible. They are valid even if they are not registered with the trademark office.

    Remedies for infringement

    The Trademark Law provides both civil and criminal law remedies for cases of infringement.

    Civil remedies include the compensation of damages and the termination of the infringing activities.

    Special preliminary remedies are applicable in cases of trademark infringement. The trademark owner may obtain an injunction against the infringer, when the trademark is registered and its violation is immediately evident.

    Criminal law remedies are rarely used in practice.

  • Trade secrets

    Nature of right

    Argentine law provides protection for trade secrets and confidential information. A complex set of rules creates rights against conduct whereby access is gained illegally to confidential information, or which implies illegal use of trade secrets or confidential information or which results in the unauthorized and harmful disclosure of confidential or secret information.

    Confidential information is characterized by the fact that it is kept in a reserved manner and that it is not generally available for technicians working in the relevant technical field. Trade secrets receive a special degree of protection, particularly under criminal law.

    Legal framework

    Confidential information is governed and protected by Law 24,766. It is also protected by the Trips Agreement and by the Paris Convention.

    In addition, multiple rules and statutes protect confidential information and trade secrets. Labor law protects the confidentiality and ownership of information used in employment relationships.

    Several criminal law rules apply to special types of violations of confidentiality. In particular, disclosure of trade secrets and unfair competition by means of the illegal use or appropriation of trade secrets are subject to criminal law penalties.

    Duration of right

    Confidential information and trade secrets are protected for as long as the relevant information is kept confidential. The degree of protection diminishes if the information ceases to be objectively a secret due to its previous disclosure or because it has been obtained independently by other parties.

    Ownership / licenses

    Ownership results from the obtention of the information, accompanied by legal or practical measures aimed at restricting access to that information by third parties. No registration requirement is applicable.

    Joint ownership is possible.

    Trade secret or know-how licenses are common and enforceable.

    Remedies for infringement

    Argentine law provides civil and criminal law remedies for cases of trade secret infringement.

    Damages caused by these violations must be compensated. It is also possible to obtain court orders requiring termination of the violation.

    Preliminary remedies include injunctions against further exploitation or disclosure of trade secrets.

    Criminal remedies are applicable in cases of disclosure of trade secrets acquired in the course of employment and other professional relationship, as well as in cases in which the violation of the rights to confidential information or trade secrets results in unfair competition.

  • Other key IP rights

    Nature of right

    Industrial designs

    Industrial models and designs are protected by special industrial property rights. An industrial model or design consists in the forms embodied in or the aspect applied to an industrial or artisan product, which confer an ornamental character to such product.

    Exclusive rights on industrial models and designs result from registration of the relevant model or design.

    Industrial designs

    Industrial designs

    Legal framework

    Industrial designs

    Industrial models and designs are protected by Decree 6673/1963, as amended. They are also protected in accordance with the Trips Agreement and the Paris Convention.

    Duration of right

    Industrial designs

    The rights derived from the registration of an industrial model or design last for a five-year period, counted from the date of filing of the relevant application. The registration may be renewed for two successive five-year period, if the owner requests such renewal.

    Ownership / licenses

    Industrial designs

    Ownership belongs to the author. There is a rebuttable presumption to the effect that the first applicant of an industrial model or design registration is the author of such industrial model or design. Joint ownership is possible and is governed by the Civil and Commercial Code and by Decree 6673/1963 as amended.

    Industrial models or designs may be the subject matter of license agreements. No registration is necessary for the validity of these agreements.

    Remedies for infringement

    Industrial designs

    Civil and criminal law remedies are applicable in case of infringement. Civil remedies include the compensation of damages and termination of the violation.

    Preliminary injunctions and remedies are possible in accordance with general procedural rules.

    Criminal sanctions have been recently reinforced, but they are rarely applied.

  • Intellectual property in employment context


    Special rules on employee inventions are included in the Patent Law and in the Labor Contract Law.

    There are basically three types of invention, from the perspective of employer-employee relationships. First, inventions made in technological areas for which the employee was hired as a researcher or developer belong to the employer. The employee may be entitled to a special compensation if they develop a patented invention which exceeds the normal scope of the employee's work. Second, inventions related to the employee's work or related to the employer's know-how or activities belong to the employee, but allow the employer to exercise an option to acquire rights over the invention. If the option is exercised, the employee is entitled to a payment reflecting the value of the invention. Third, inventions that do not fall into the two previous categories belong to the employee.

    Similar rules are applicable in the case of other types of technology or intellectual property rights. In the case of software, the law applies the “work for hire” doctrine but allows the parties to agree to different contractual rules.

    Consultants / contractors

    The law is not explicit about the rights of consultants and contractors, who do not qualify as employees, with regard to technology and other intellectual property they develop. Generally, the parties may agree as to the rules which will apply to such rights. In the absence of a contractual framework, the technology or intellectual property generated by a consultant or contractor who was hired with the purpose of developing such items that will belong to the person paying for such work.

  • Key commercial contract considerations

    Registration of commercial agreements

    The general rule is that commercial agreements are not registered, and that their validity and effect is not subject to registration requirements. However, certain types of agreement must be registered to be effective or to have full effects against third parties. Agreements subject to registration include business association agreements, certain publishing agreements, certain chattel mortgages and certain agreements related to real estate. International transfer of technology agreements are subject to registration for tax purposes.

    Recognized language of commercial agreements

    Agreements are generally entered in Spanish. However, it is legally possible to enter agreements written in other languages. These agreements must be translated when presented in court. Spanish language may be necessary in consumer transactions.

    Country-specific issues for online content

    Argentina has ratified the WIPO conventions applicable to online content and practices. However, enforcement of these conventions is weak.

    Enforceability of online/clickwrap/shrinkwrap terms

    The general rule is that acceptance of terms included in online, click wrap or shrink wrap elements is valid and effective, provided such acceptance is clearly stated and applies to terms that were known to the person giving the acceptance. However, several rules may limit the effects of agreements entered by these mechanisms, particularly consumer protection rules and rules on adhesion contracts.

    Governing law

    The basic rule is that the parties may agree as to the law that will govern their contractual rights and as to the applicable jurisdiction in case of dispute. This freedom of election is subject to several limitations. Non-Argentine law will not be enforced in Argentine courts if it is contrary to Argentine public policy. Also, certain matters are necessarily governed by Argentine law; for example, if a business association is created in Argentina its organization and other corporate aspects will be governed by Argentine law. Decisions made by non-Argentine courts or arbitration tribunals are enforceable in Argentina only after going through a special procedure before the Argentine courts, in the context of which the decision will only be enforced if it complies with certain rules, particularly not violating Argentine public policy. In addition, certain matters (eg, deciding the validity of a patent issued in Argentina) are necessarily subject to Argentine jurisdiction.

  • Key commercial contract terms

    Enforceability of warranty disclaimers

    Argentine law provides certain warranties, generally applicable to all types of contracts implying the transfer of rights. These warranties apply, in particular, to the validity of the rights being transferred and to the fitness of the goods regarding which rights are transferred.

    The general rule is that these warranties may be limited or eliminated by agreement between the parties. However, these disclaimers are totally or partially invalid in several types of cases: if the transferor had prior knowledge of the invalidity of the transferred rights or of the deficiency of the goods involved; if the transferor is a merchant and the parties waiving the transferor's rights are not; and if the warranty disclaimer is included in a consumer or adhesion contract.

    Enforceability of exclusions/limitations of liability indemnification

    Exclusions or limitations of liability indemnification are valid if they meet the general conditions applicable to contractual clauses. However, they may be unenforceable in the following cases: when they extend to willful violations or defaults, or to violations or defaults resulting from gross negligence; when they are imposed in adhesion or consumer contracts; or when they result in the violation or annulment of rights that may not be removed or limited contractually.


    The basic rule under Argentine law is full indemnification of economic or moral damages caused by illegal conduct, whether that conduct constitutes a contractual or a tort violation.

    The parties are free to include contractual rules as to the extent of their indemnification obligations.

    Penalty clauses and liquidated damages clauses are acceptable, but they may be limited or amended by the courts if their terms are deemed abusive.

    In the absence of contractual provisions, the indemnification's extent will depend on circumstances such as the willful or negligent nature of the violation, foreseeability of the damages caused and the comparative fault of the parties.

    Electronic signatures

    Electronic signatures are valid and effective under Argentine law. However, certain legal effects require that the signature comply with a special certification regime.

  • Key contacts
    Guillermo Cabanellas
    Guillermo Cabanellas
    Senior Partner DLA Piper (Argentina) [email protected] T +5411 41145500 View bio

Intellectual property framework



Protection of intellectual property rights is required by the Federal Constitution and by several multilateral treaties. The main statutes in this area are federal statutes. However, in case of litigation, some matters are subject to federal jurisdiction, and others to provincial jurisdiction.


Intellectual property rights (other than trade secrets and common law trademark rights) are governed by the laws of the Commonwealth (ie, at a federal level) and interpreted by court judgments (ie, common law). There are no state or territory-based intellectual property laws.


In general, intellectual property rights in Austria are governed by specific federal statutory laws, as follows:

  • Copyright – the Copyright Act (Urheberrechtsgesetz)
  • Patent – the Patent Act (Patentgesetz)
  • Utility Models – the Utility Model Act (Gebrauchsmustergesetz)
  • Trademarks – the Trademark Act (Markenschutzgesetz)
  • Semiconductors – the Semiconductor Protection Act (Halbleiterschutzgesetz)
  • Designs and utility patents – the Designs Act (Musterschutzgesetz)
  • Trade secrets – the Unfair Competition Act (Gesetz gegen den unlauteren Wettbewerb)

Certain other statutory laws protect other manifestations of intellectual property that do not fulfill the requirements of the intellectual property types cited above in various ways – in particular, the Act on Unfair Competition (Gesetz gegen den unlauteren Wettbewerb), which imposes a more general prohibition or limitation to takeover of other persons' intellectual works and offers certain amount of protection for trade secrets and know-how, the Criminal Code (Strafgesetzbuch), which penalizes certain trade secret related actions and the Commercial Code (Unternehmensgesetzbuch) and Company Register Code (Firmenbuchgesetz), which provide protection for names and company names.


In general, intellectual property rights in Belgium are governed by the following Federal statutory laws:

  • Patent – Title 1 (Patents) of Book XI (Intellectual Property and Trade Secrets) of the Code of Economic Law
  • Copyright – Title 5 (Copyrights and Neighboring Rights) of Book XI (Intellectual Property and Trade Secrets) of the Code of Economic Law
  • Software – Title 6 (Computer Programs.) of Book XI (Intellectual Property and Trade Secrets) of the Code of Economic Law
  • Database rights – Title 7 (Databases) and Title 5 (Copyrights and Neighboring Rights) of Book XI (Intellectual Property and Trade Secrets) of the Code of Economic Law
  • Semiconductors – Title 8 (Topographies of Semiconductor Products) of Book XI (Intellectual Property and Trade Secrets) of the Code of Economic Law
  • Trademarks – Benelux Convention on Intellectual Property of February 25, 2005, as amended by the Protocol of December 11, 2017
  • Designs – Benelux Convention on Intellectual Property of February 25, 2005, as amended by the Protocol of December 11, 2017

In addition, certain other statutory laws may protect other manifestations of intellectual property that do not fulfill the requirements of the intellectual property types cited above, such as trade names, company names, domain names and misleading and comparative advertising.


Intellectual property rights are governed by the Federal Constitution and Federal laws.


As a general matter intellectual property rights, such as patents and copyrights as well as the registration of trademarks, are governed by federal statutes.


As a general matter, intellectual property rights are governed by Law No 17,336 of Intellectual Property, and Law 19,039 of Industrial Property. The different rights are administered and protected by different agencies in Chile. The main ones are the National Institute of Industrial Property (INAPI) and the Intellectual Rights Department (DDI).


In China, intellectual property rights are primarily protected under four major intellectual property laws, the Patent Law, the Trademark Law and the Copyright Law, the Anti-Unfair Competition Law and their Implementing Regulations. In addition, there are a large number of regulations, rules, measures, policies and opinions issued by the Standing Committee of National People's Congress, the State Administration of Market Supervision and various administrative authorities which further address issues concerning application of the intellectual property laws. The judicial interpretations made by the Supreme People's Court also form a part of the legal framework.


Colombia has a wide regulation on intellectual property consisting of international treaties, national laws and decrees, mainly governed by the decisions issued by the Andean Community (CAN). According to Article 6 of the National Constitution, the Colombian state has the obligation of protecting intellectual property. Article 151 of the Constitution states that Congress shall dictate the legal regime on industrial property, patents, trademarks and any other intellectual property that may be protected.

The Colombian Intellectual Property Regime is mainly regulated by CAN regulation, particularly Decisions 486 and 351. Intellectual property is comprised of 2 main groups of rights: copyrights and industrial property. Industrial property protects exclusive rights regarding trademarks, brands, slogans, designations of origin, patents over inventions and utility models, industrial designs and layout-designs of integrated circuits. These rights are recognized once the national authority on industrial property registers them.

Moreover, copyrights include 2 different rights: moral and economic rights that may be held by the same or different persons and are recognized since the creation of an original work (eg, software, literary work, musical work, work of art, audiovisual work and phonograms).

Furthermore, local regulation covers different and specific matters in accordance with Decision 689 of the CAN, such as certain terms, requirements and procedural rules applicable to the internal processes for recognized intellectual property rights.

Two main principles govern intellectual property in Colombia: territoriality and protection against unfair competition. The principle of territoriality states that relevant authorities may grant or recognize rights within the territories where they have competency. Nevertheless, international treaties may extend the protection of such rights to other countries. The principle of protection against unfair competition establishes that a right holder may defend a granted right against third parties, which allows free competition given that a right holder can prevent unfair practices as acts of confusion, discredit or exploitation of others’ reputations.

Czech Republic

Czech law belongs to the continental system of law (or civil law, as opposed to common law). Regulations covering intellectual property rights are primarily set out in various statutes issued by Czech Parliament.

The most important statutes are the following (each of them as amended from time to time):

  • Act No. 121/2000 Coll. on Rights Related to Copyright (Copyright Act)
  • Act No. 527/1990 Coll. on Inventions and Improvement Proposals (Patents Act)
  • Act No. 441/2003 Coll. on Trademarks (Trademarks Act)
  • Act No. 478/1992 Coll. on Utility Models (Utility Models Act)
  • Act No. 207/2000 Coll. on Protection of Industrial Designs (Industrial Designs Act)
  • Act No. 529/1991 Coll. on Protection of Topographies of Semiconductor Products (Topographies of Semiconductor Products Act)
  • Act No. 206/2000 Coll. on Protection of Biotechnological Inventions
  • Act No. 408/2000 Coll. on Protection of Plant Variety Rights
  • Act No. 452/2001 Coll. Protection of Designations of Origin and Geographical Indications
  • Act No. 221/2006 Coll. on Enforcement of Industrial Property Rights
  • Act No. 89/2012 Coll. Civil Code (Civil Code), providing general framework of civil law and regulating trade secrets

Many of these pieces of legislation are in compliance with relevant EU legislation, as the Czech Republic is a member country of the European Union.


In general, intellectual property rights are governed by EU regulations and directives as well as by Danish law.


The Finnish intellectual property legislation is largely impacted by European Union (EU) directives and regulations. Some of the national legislation has been jointly drafted with other Nordic countries. In addition to specific IPR legislation, the law relating to unfair business practices is also relevant between commercial entities. For cases of deliberate or grossly negligent infringement, criminal law provisions may also apply.


France is a civil law country.

Most of the rules and requirements applicable to intellectual property rights derive either from French law or European Union law and are codified in the French Intellectual Property Code.


German Constitution (Grundgesetz) refers protection of copyright and industrial property rights to exclusive legislation. In cases of exclusive legislation, only the Federal government has the legislative power.

Hong Kong, SAR

Hong Kong has an established legal framework for the protection of intellectual property rights in patents, trademarks, copyright and registered designs under various ordinances.


Intellectual property rights are governed by individual state acts. In questions not specified by these acts, the Hungarian Civil Code (Act No. 5 of 2013 of the Hungarian Civil Code) is applicable.

Since Hungary is a member of the European Union, each intellectual property act shall be in line with the respective EU directives and regulations. In addition, certain EU regulations apply directly.


As a general matter intellectual property rights are governed by Federal statutes. However, trade secrets are not specifically protected by any legislation though they may be protected as contractual obligations, subject to the Indian Contract Act 1872 (Contract Act).


The intellectual property framework consists of the following laws:

  • Law Number 28 of 2014 on Copyrights
  • Law Number 13 of 2016 on Patents
  • Law Number 20 of 2016 on Trademarks and Geographical Indications
  • Law Number 30 of 2000 on Trade Secrets
  • Law Number 31 of 2000 on Industrial Designs
  • Law Number 32 of 2000 on Layout Designs of Integrated Circuits
  • Law Number 29 of 2000 on Plant Variety Protection

The government body who has responsibility for the administration and registration of intellectual property rights in Indonesia is the Directorate General of Intellectual Property Rights under the Ministry of Law and Human Rights of the Republic of Indonesia. The Minister of Law and Human Rights finally issued the Regulation of Minister of Law and Human Rights Number 8 of 2016 regarding Requirements and Procedure of Recording of Intellectual Property Licenses ("Minister Regulation No 8") on February 24, 2016.


The intellectual property regime in Ireland is primarily based on a modern legislative framework. There are some intellectual property rights that are governed by common law.


As a general matter, intellectual property rights are statutory rights, with the exception of trade secrets, which are protected under Israel's Commercial Tort Law as a civil tort.


As a general matter, intellectual property rights are governed by the Industrial Property Code (Legislative Decree No. 30/2005) the Italian Copyright Law (Law No. 633/1941) the Civil Code and ad hoc legislation.


Intellectual property rights including patent right, utility model right, design right, copyright, trademark right and trade secrets are specified and protected under each relevant intellectual property law.


In general, the intellectual property rights in Luxembourg are governed by the following statutory laws:

  • Copyright – Law of 18 April 2001 on Copyright, Neighboring Rights and Databases, as amended, lastly by the Law of 3 April 2020 (the Copyright Act)
  • Database Rights (sui generis right, distinct from copyright) – Law of 18 April 2001, as amended by the Law of 18 April 2004 and lastly by the Law of 10 February 2015 (the Copyright Act)
  • Patent – Law of 20 July 1992 amending the System for Patents for Invention, as amended by the Law of 24 May 1998 and lastly by the Law of 18 December 2009 (the Patent Act)
  • Trademarks – Benelux Convention on Intellectual Property of 25 February 2005 as approved by the Law of 16 May 2006
  • Industrial Designs – Benelux Convention on Intellectual Property of 25 February 2005 as approved by the Law of 16 May 2006
  • Semiconductors – Law of 29 December 1988 on the Legal Protection of Topographies of Semiconductor Products
  • Professor's Privilege/Ownership of publicly funded research – Special laws on the public funding of research results

Article 50bis of the Luxembourg income tax law, providing for a specific tax regime applying for intellectual property rights, has been repealed by law of 18 December 2015 and no longer applies as from 1 July 2016. However, the new Lawlaw of 17 April 2018 introduces a new article 50ter which provides for an 80 percent partial tax exemption on the net income derived from eligible intellectual property assets as well as a 100% exemption from net wealth tax and applies from 1 January 2018 in parallel (and non-cumulatively) with the former regime (until the expiry of the grandfathering period under that regime, i.e 30 June 2021).


Two Federal laws provide the core legal basis for protection of intellectual property rights in Mexico:

  • The Industrial Property Law (Ley de la Propiedad Industrial)
  • The Federal Copyright Law (Ley Federal del Derecho de Autor)


In the Netherlands, the intellectual property rights are governed by the following federal statutory laws:

  • Copyright – Copyright Act of 1912
  • Software – Regulation regarding software is included in the Copyright Act of 1912 (see chapter VI of the Copyright Act of 1912) implementing the EU Directive of May 14, 1991 on the Legal Protection of Computer Programs (91/250/EEG)
  • Patent – Patents Act of 1995
  • Trademarks – Benelux Convention on Intellectual Property of 2005
  • Designs – Benelux Convention on Intellectual Property of 2005
  • Semiconductors – Act on the Legal Protection of Topographies of Semiconductor Products of 1987
  • Database rights – Databases (Legal Protection) Act of 1999
  • Trade name – Trade Names Act of 1921

In addition, certain other statutory laws may protect other manifestations of intellectual property that do not fulfill the requirements of the intellectual property types cited above, such as know-how, trade and industrial secrets, company names, domain names and misleading and comparative advertising.

New Zealand

Intellectual property rights in New Zealand are primarily governed by specific statutes: the Trade Marks Act 2002, Designs Act 1953, Patents Act 2013 and the Copyright Act 1994. However, these statutes have not codified New Zealand intellectual property law, and common law principles relating to intellectual property rights are still an important part of the intellectual property framework.

New Zealand has ratified the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).  There are amendments to certain key intellectual property laws, including the Copyright Act 1994 and the Patents Act 2013, which are not yet in force, and are unlikely to come into effect unless the USA and other jurisdictions sign the TPP.


In Norway, intellectual property rights are governed by various Norwegian laws. Norwegian intellectual property legislation is based on various international agreements and EU directives and regulations implemented through the EEA agreement.


As a general matter, intellectual property rights are governed by Republic Act No. 8293, as amended, or the Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines (IPC), along with other laws relating to intellectual property and intellectual property rights.


The regulations governing intellectual property rights in Poland include:

  • The Industrial Property Law Act (ustawa Prawo własności przemysłowej), which regulates patents, utility models, industrial designs, trademarks and service marks, mask works and geographical indications
  • The Act on Copyright and Related Rights (ustawa o prawie autorskim i prawach pokrewnych), which covers the protection of the rights of authors to their works, the rights of performers to their artistic performances, the rights of producers of phonograms and videograms, and the protection of personal images
  • The Act on Combating Unfair Competition (ustawa o zwalczaniu nieuczciwej konkurencji), which protects trade secrets
  • Regulation (EU) 2017/1001 of the European Parliament and of the Council of June 14, 2017 on the European Union trade mark

  • Council Regulation (EC) No. 6/2002 of December 12, 2001 on Community designs


The fundamental intellectual property framework in Portugal is provided in two main acts: the Code of Copyright and Related Rights (Decree-Law no. 63/85 of 14 of March, as amended) and the Industrial Property Code (Decree-Law no.110/2018 of 10 of December).


As a general matter, intellectual property rights are governed by statutory provisions, which are generally harmonized across the European Union.


As a general matter, intellectual property rights are governed by Part IV of the Russian Civil Code.

Saudi Arabia

Intellectual property rights are protected by a number of laws that have been passed by Royal Decree and are enforced by the courts. All laws in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) are subject to Shari'a principles.

The KSA generally operates by reference to the Hijri (or Islamic) calendar for official purposes. Careful attention is therefore required when making reference to protection periods and any timeframes associated with the different intellectual property rights, to ensure that relevant deadlines are not inadvertently missed.


Intellectual property rights are governed by a body of local legislation in Singapore, such as the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore Act (Cap. 140), Patents Act (Cap. 221), Copyright Act (Cap. 63), Registered Designs Act (Cap. 266), Trademarks Act (Cap. 332), among others (as amended and supplemented from time to time). The Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) oversees and advises on the application of this legislation.

Slovak Republic

There is no complex legislative act governing intellectual property rights as objects of legal protection in the Slovak Republic. Instead, intellectual property rights are subject to national law, law of the European Union and international law.

As regards the national regulation, this is divided into various specific legal acts concerning the respective object of intellectual property.

These objects may be:

  • copyright, rights related to the copyright;
  • industrial rights, rights similar to the industrial rights.

In addition, there are several regulations of the European Union on intellectual property which apply in the territory of the Slovak Republic, as one of the member states of the European Union. Also, the directives of the European Union on intellectual property have been implemented into the legal order of the Slovak Republic. The international treaties governing the intellectual property rights, applicable in the Slovak Republic, are stated in the following text as well.

South Korea

As a general matter, intellectual property rights are governed by various Korean intellectual property statutes, including the Patent Act (PA), the Copyright Act (CA), the Utility Model Act, the Trademark Act (TMA), the Design Protection Act, the Unfair Competition Prevention and Trade Secret Protection Act (UCPA) and the Semiconductor Chip Act (SCA).


The Spanish Constitution establishes in the Article 149.1.9 that intellectual property rights shall be governed by Spanish National Statutes only. Self-Governing Regions (the Spanish equivalent of US states or German Länder) are not entitled to issue laws in this field.


Intellectual property rights in Sweden are protected by various laws. Swedish intellectual property legislation is based on various European Union (EU) directives and regulations. The protection of trade secrets is provided for by law.


Intellectual property rights are governed by Federal statutes and by international treaties.

Taiwan, China

Intellectual property is regulated and protected in Taiwan under various laws, such as the Copyright Act for original works of authorship; Trademark Act for trademarks; Patent Act for invention, utility model and design; and the Integrated Circuit Layout Protection Act for integrated circuit layouts. The Civil Code is the basic law for any other intangible property right.


Intellectual property rights in Ukraine are mainly regulated by Civil and Commercial Codes as well as specific laws pertaining to separate intellectual property objects. Further, Ukraine has ratified a majority of international treaties pertaining to intellectual property rights protection.

Following Ukraine's ratification of the EU Association Agreement, Ukraine is bringing its intellectual property legislation in line with EU standards. Specifically, changes to the regulation of geographical indications, trademarks, inventions, utility models and topographies are expected.

United Arab Emirates

In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), intellectual property rights are governed by the following Federal Laws:

  • Federal Law No. 15 of 1980 (Printed Matter and Publishing Law)
  • Federal Law No. 7 of 2002 (Copyright Law)
  • Federal Law No. 17 of 2002 (Patent Law)
  • Federal Law No. 37 of 1992 as amended by Federal Law No. 8 of 2002 (Trademark Law)
  • Federal Law No. 19 of 2016 on Combatting Commercial Fraud (Anti Commercial Fraud Law)

In addition, the UAE is a civil law jurisdiction, so the laws and regulations are codified. Court judgments are not routinely published. Moreover, UAE courts are not bound to follow the prior decisions of superior courts, although they are treated as persuasive. On this basis, it is difficult to predict with a degree of certainty how the law will be applied by the court.

United Kingdom

Intellectual property rights are governed by a variety of statutes and common law. The substantive provisions are generally equally applicable throughout the United Kingdom (comprising England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland). As the UK is currently part of the European Union (EU), some of its intellectual property law derives from EU legislation.

The UK's vote in June 2016 to leave the EU has no immediate consequences and does not affect the position of the UK as an EU member state. There are no immediate changes to IP rights in the UK; however, the scope and status of these rights are addressed in the draft agreement for the UK's withdrawal and, if the draft cannot be finally agreed, will be subject to other changes, in particular as regards EU-wide rights such as the EU trademark.

United States

As a general matter, intellectual property rights are governed by Federal statutes with certain exceptions, such as trade secrets, that are also governed by state law.