Zambia – Supreme Court Decision on User Rights

Africa news |

26 February 2013

A decision made by the Zambia Registry to dismiss the importance of user rights in the case (DH Brothers Industries (Pty) Limited v Olivine Industries (Pty) Limited) has just been brought to our attention. This decision despite the fact that the laws of the country recognise common law trade marks.
In the aforementioned case, the Supreme Court has upheld the Registry decision with the result that the Zambia Trade Mark Act does not offer protection of rights associated with unregistered marks. We therefore strongly advise clients to immediately seek registration of their trade marks in Zambia.  In the absence of a valid trade mark registration, the mark will be vulnerable to outright dismissal by the Registrar giving third parties opportunity to  misappropriate your rights.