Registration process of Patent in US Virgin Islands:
Step 1: File an application for patent with the US Virgin Patent Office
Step 2: Examination of patent application
Step 3: Respond to any objections or rejections made by the examiner
Step 4: Patent grant
Power of Attorney simply signed
The timeframe from filing to registration of patent goes form 2 to 3 years approximately.
Substantive examination of US Virgin Islands Patent:
The examiner will determine whether the patent application meets the statutory requirements to secure a patent. The statutory requirements are
- Patent Eligible Subject Matter
the invention must be a type that is eligible for patent protection. You cannot patent a law of nature, a natural phenomenon or an abstract idea.
The invention must be new. If the idea already exists in the public domain (e.g., prior art), then the government has no incentive to grant you a patent on your invention.
The invention must be a non-obvious variant of existing technology. If it was an obvious variant, then your invention would have made it into the public domain without you disclosing your invention via the patent process.
- Written Description and Enablement
You have to teach others to make and use your invention for the government to grant you a patent. Otherwise, there is no benefit to the public in exchange for the patent grant. The technology is transferred to the public via a document that you prepare which explains the technology.
If the claimed invention is eligible for patent protection, novel, non-obvious and meets the written description and enablement requirements, then the examiner will grant a patent on the invention.
Maintenance fee need to be paid to kept the patent alive.
Trademark Law in US Virgin Islands:
US Virgin Islands National Trademark protection is governed by a federal law in force since 1946 commonly referred to as “The Lanham Act”.
Nice classification, 11th edition, with local exceptions for various goods and services.
Power of Attorney simply signed.
Registration Proceedings in US Virgin Islands:
A federal trademark application is filed at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, based on use or intent to use, or on a foreign registration or application.
Multiple-class applications are possible.
The application process includes a formal examination, an examination of distinctiveness and a search for prior trademarks. Applications that conflict with prior trademarks will be refused but the owners of cited earlier marks are not notified of this action. Marks deemed to be “merely descriptive” in the examination can be registered if distinctiveness is proven to have been acquired by use. This can typically be shown by five years’ use in commerce in the United States, by an existing registration of the same mark for closely related goods, or by market or consumer evidence.
The processing time from first filing to registration is approximately 9-16 months if no refusals occur. The processing time can vary depending on a variety of factors including the basis for the filing. The first examination occurs approximately three months after filing. The Office may issue an Office Action. Once these are resolved, or if none are issued, the application is approved for publication and published once in the “Official Gazette”. If the application was filed based on use in United States commerce (called Section 1(a)) or on a foreign registration (called Section 44(e)) and no opposition has been filed during the 30-day opposition period, the registration will be issued. Applications based on foreign registrations (via the Paris Convention) or under the Madrid Protocol do not require a specimen of, and Affidavit attesting to use until the sixth anniversary of the date of registration. For applications filed based on intent to use in interstate commerce in the United States or international commerce with the United States, after allowance will be given six months to provide specimen of use and an Affidavit attesting to use (extendible for five additional six-month terms) before. After the statement of use is submitted and accepted, the registration is issued.
The opposition period is 30 days from the publication date of the application. The period is extendable.
A trademark registration is valid for a full term of 10 years from date of registration, if an Affidavit of Use and specimen of use is filed between the 5th and 6th year after the date of U.S. registration.
After 5 years of continuous use of the mark in the U.S., the registrant can elect to claim an “incontestability” status, making the registration subject to fewer legal theories that could result in cancellation. An Affidavit of Use and proof of use must be filed between the 9th and 10th year post registration for trademark renewal. Then the registration can be renewed for subsequent 10-year periods.