Chilean patents are granted for a 20-year term in the case of inventions and a 10-year term in the case of utility models and industrial designs. The term is counted as from the relevant filing and is non-renewable. In the case of utility models, protection is given to the functionality related to a particular form, and in the case of designs, to the form itself.
Chile is a party to the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) and its regulations, and to the Budapest Treaty.
It is possible to register trademarks to identify products and services. Trademarks can be denominative, labels or slogans. Additionally, our current laws allow the registration of sound brands. Tridimensional brands may not be registered in Chile.
Trademark protection is granted for a 10-year term that can be indefinitely renewed by the holder of the registry.
Chilean law does not require the use of a registered trademark; therefore it is not possible to file a caducity complaint on grounds of lack of use.
Chile is a party to the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, to TRIPS and to the Trademark Law Treaty.
It is possible to register in Chile plant varieties at the Chilean Agriculture and Livestock Bureau, entity that depends from the Ministry of Agriculture.
The coverage of the protection is given for the 1978 International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants Convention (UPOV 1978 Convention) and refers to the genetic material but not to the fruits. Our law recognizes the “Farmer’s Right”.
The provisions of the UPOV 1991 Convention are not yet applicable in Chile.
The most important aspect of plant varieties’ protection is the “novelty” requirement. Novelty is deemed non-existent after 4 years of “use” abroad regarding flowers and seeds among others, and after 6 years of “use” in the case of fruits and trees. When they are being “used” in Chile, novelty is deemed non-existent after just one year, in all cases.
Food and Health Registries are documents extended by the Chilean Institute of Public Health, that prove that a pharmaceutical or cosmetic product or pesticide (either domestic or sanitary) are duly registered, hence authorized for their commercialization in the country.
To obtain a Food or Health Registry it is required to file all technical, health and legal documents deemed necessary to determine a product’s nature, use, composition and contraindications.
In general terms, all literary, artistic, musical, dramatic, sculptural, photographic, cinematographic and software works, among others, are protected.
Chilean authors and foreign authors domiciled in Chile are internationally protected as a consequence of the following treaties:
It is noteworthy that recently, Chile has subscribed and ratified several treaties related to copyright issues, namely, TRIPS, European Union Free Trade Agreement, Free Trade Agreement with the United States of America, among others.
The general rule establishes that copyright protection lasts the author's life, plus 70 years.
Business secrets can be defined as any particular knowledge regarding products or industrial procedures that when kept in reserve, permits a competitive improvement, benefit or advantage to the holder thereof.
There are many protections available, including some involving criminal liability that aim to protect such particular knowledge.