Protection of Intellectual Property

Intellectual property is protected in Canada under the laws relating to trademarks, copyright, patents, industrial designs, integrated circuit topography and trade secrets.

The information contained in this guide is current as of August 2018. However, it is expected that the law relating to trademark registration and protection will change significantly in the next year or so. On June 19, 2014, the Government of Canada made significant amendments to the Trade-marks Act in a Budget Implementation Bill (Bill C-31, Economic Action Plan 2014 Act, No. 1). The specific amendments to the Trade-marks Act are not yet in force, but are expected to be made effective in 2019, once the necessary regulations are drafted. These changes include the removal of “use” as a condition for registration, the adoption of the Nice international classification system, the recognition of colour, sound and scent marks, reduction of the registration term from 15 to 10 years, and participation in the Madrid Protocol international filing system.

We strongly recommend you consult with legal counsel prior to using a new trademark in Canada and you review your brand protection strategy in view of the pending changes to Canadian trademark law.

Download the complete 2018 Doing Business in Canada guide