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Impact of COVID-19 on the Indonesian IP System as of May 14, 2020

14

MAY

2020

In response to the increasing number of COVID-19 cases, the Indonesian Ministry of Health has implemented detailed guidelines for large-scale social restrictions (known as pembatasan sosial berskala besar or PSBB). PSBB has been applied in two provinces so far—Jakarta and West Sumatra—and may be extended to others in due course. Although the restriction has wide ranging effects on many business sectors, IP owners are still able to exercise their rights by registering them through the online system of the Directorate General of Intellectual Property (DGIP). In addition, although courts have postponed some cases, online trials are available and ongoing subject to the discretion of the presiding judge in each case.

However, following the recent extension and expansion of measures that have a limited impact the exercise of intellectual property rights in Indonesia (as detailed in our earlier client alert), we provide an updated overview of the current impact on the IP system in Indonesia below.

Directorate General of Intellectual Property

The DGIP, the Indonesian government agency that oversees IP rights in the country, issued its latest notification on the limitation of physical contact due to the COVID-19 outbreak on May 13, 2020, extending the office closure of physical counters until May 29. During this period, all DGIP officers are working from home and accessing the system remotely, optimizing the online channels for IP matters. These conditions will remain in effect until at least May 29, 2020 (under Circular Letter No. HKI-OT.02.02-19, which may be subject to extension).

Trademarks

The online system remains available for:

  • New trademark application filings.
  • Responses to office actions.
  • Recordals.
  • Appeals.
  • Oppositions and rebuttals.

For all online filings, the original deadlines remain unchanged. Meanwhile, the Trademark Appeal Commission has declared that any appeal deadline falling within the closure period will be extended until the situation is normal (until May 21, 2020, unless extended).

Patents

The online system remains available for:

  • New patent applications.
  • Responses to office actions issued for patent applications filed prior to August 19, 2019 (which must be submitted through the online filing system and no special extension is available). Any failure to submit formality documents must be communicated to the DGIP.
  • Official fees for patent annuities (an official receipt will not be provided until the DGIP counter reopens).

For patent applications filed before August 19, 2019, excess claims cannot be paid through online filing. Therefore, excess claims can be paid when the DGIP counter reopens.

Other

The online filing of copyrights and industrial designs can be conducted normally during this period.

Courts

The Supreme Court has issued Circular Letter No. 1 of 2020 regarding the Guidelines for the Implementation of Duties during the COVID-19 Prevention Period within the Supreme Court and the Lower Judicial Bodies.

The circular letter encourages every judge to optimize their working-from-home system and utilize e-court proceedings. Trials of all cases other than nonextendable criminal, military, or Islamic criminal matters are suspended until the prevention period is over—with further note made by the court clerk. However, the circular letter mentions that judges, at their own discretion, can determine the urgency of suspension. Therefore, the disputing parties in IP cases need to check with the Commercial Court regarding whether the examination of the case is suspended or not.

National Agency of Drug and Food Control

Offices of the National Agency of Drug and Food Control (NADFC, or BPOM in Indonesian), remain closed for walk-in filing and consultation until further notice. The last day that their counters were open for service was March 12, 2020, and they are now officially closed for on-site services until further notice.

During this period, the NADFC officials remain available for inquiry via email, messaging applications, or phone call, though wait times may vary.

About the Firm

Tilleke & Gibbins
Address Lippo Kuningan, 12th Floor, Unit A Jl. H.R. Rasuna Said Kav. B-12. Kuningan, Jakarta 12940. Indonesia.
Tel 62-21-2971 8088
Fax 62-21-2971 8050
Email indonesia@tilleke.com
Link www.tilleke.com

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