The fourth and biggest Covid-19 wave in Vietnam has begun since the end of this April. The Intellectual Property Office of Vietnam (IPVN) has recently issued Notification No. 4670/SHTT-VP. Accordingly, overall, everything is somewhat delayed. Specifically, as from 27 May 2021:
– Applicants/IP agents have to submit paper applications/documents through post services. The main office of the IPVN in the capital Hanoi will not receive the same directly;
– The IPVN will still receive online-filed applications. However, only a number of kinds of applications can be filed online and after uploading an online application and receiving a confirmation note, the applicants/IP agents still need to send the confirmation note, normally by post, to the IPVN to receive an official filing date;
– The filing receipts issued by the IPVN and communications from the IPVN such as office actions will be sent by post to applicants/IP agents.
The two branch offices of the IPVN in Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh city are still operating normally. Therefore, in our operation, in necessary cases like the need to promptly have a filing receipt, we (Hanoi office of INVESTIP) will prepare the documents and seek help from our branch office in Ho Chi Minh city to submit the same to the branch office of the IPVN in Ho Chi Minh city where are 1.7 km far from our Ho Chi Minh city office.
A similar procedure took place also in April last year and lasted about 30 days, so the IPVN and Vietnam IP agents are familiar with the same. This time, said Notification No. 4670/SHTT-VP states that the new procedure is applied until a further notification is issued.
By Nguyen Huyen Trang
Patent Department – INVESTIP IP LAW FIRM