SOUTH AFRICA 

South Africa is a country on the southernmost tip of the African continent. South Africa has the 2nd largest economy in Africa (after Nigeria) and is one of most industrialised countries on the continent. 

Patents

Paris Convention ✓
PCT ✓
Examination ✘
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Registration Timetable:
Complete Patent, 12 – 18 Months.

Duration and Renewal:
20 years with annual renewal fees from the 3rd anniversary of the effective date. No possible extensions.

Designs

Paris Convention ✓
Locarno Classification ✓
Hague Agreement ✓
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Registration Timetable:
Registered Design, 12 – 18 Months.

Duration and Renewal:
Functional design has a duration of 10 years, and an Aesthetic design has a duration of 15 years. Both have annual renewal fees from the 3rd anniversary of the effective date. No possible extensions.

Trade Marks

Nice Classification ✓
Madrid System ✘
Multi-class Applications ✘
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Registration Timetable:
From Filing to Registration, 2 – 3 Years.

Duration and Renewal:
10 years with optional 10-year renewal periods.

South Africa is a First to Use country.
(whomever first USES the mark gets the rights)

Copyright

Copyright does NOT have to be registered in South Africa.
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Copyright Duration:
Literary, Musical or Artistic Works: the life of the author plus 50 years following death.
Films and Photographs: 50 years from the end of the year in which the work is made publicly available.
Sound Recordings: 50 years from the end of the year in which the recording is first published.
Broadcasts: 50 years from the end of the year in which the broadcast first takes place.
Programme-carrying Signals: 50 years from the end of the year in which the signals are emitted to a satellite.
Published Editions: 50 years from the end of the year in which the edition is published.

IMPORTANT NOTICE

CIPC Renewals Increase

The South African Patents and Designs Office will implement a distinction between Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMME’s) and corporate entities. These changes will impact all official fees charged by the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC).

THE INITIAL DATE  FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF THE INCREASE IN RENEWAL FEES HAS NOW BEEN SUSPENDED INDEFINITELY.