On March 25, 2020, the General Assembly of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey (“National Assembly“) enacted the Provisional Article 1 (“Law“), which was added to the Amendment to Certain Laws No. 7226, within the scope of the COVID-19 support package. The Law suspends the time limits in legal proceedings from March 13, 2020 to April 30, 2020, both dates inclusive.
According to the Law, the time limits of trials; the mandatory administrative application periods; and all periods related to the origination, exercise and termination of any rights are suspended during the specified date range. The Law also covers the periods specified in the Industrial Property Law No. 6769 (“IPL“) and the periods regarding proceedings before the Intellectual and Industrial Property Courts (“IP Courts“) and Turkish Patent and Trademark Office (“TPTO“) are also suspended within the specified date range.
What Does the Law Say?
The Law aims to prevent the loss of legal rights that may arise due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Turkey, and suspends the time limits within this scope. The Law has consequences for intellectual and industrial property law as it has for all fields of material law.
In this context, in terms of the proceedings carried out in IP Courts,
In this context, in terms of the proceedings carried out in the TPTO,
According to the Law, the right holders and their attorneys are granted the right to perform these transactions that have not been carried out retrospectively for proceedings dated March 13, 2020 and after.
The time limits will start to run the day after the suspension period ends (May 1, 2020). The time limits that expire in 15 days or less as of the suspension period (March 13, 2020), will end in 15 days starting from the day after (May 1, 2020) the suspension period ends (May 15, 2020).
The Law regulates that if the pandemic continues, the President of the Turkish Republic can extend the suspension period once and narrow its scope. This extension period cannot exceed six months.
The measures taken to suspend the time limits in legal proceedings aim to prevent loss of rights in the proceedings before the IP Courts and the TPTO due to the pandemic. The Law provides the necessary measures to protect intellectual and industrial property rights.