by Ivan B. Ahlert
March 01, 2005
The Brazilian Industrial Property Law provides for the possibility to request extension of statutory deadlines, provided the interested party proves that it has not acted in time for legitimate reasons.
A legitimate reason is considered to be "an unforeseen event, outside the control of the party and which prevented the party from carrying out the act".
By means of Resolution 116/04, the Brazilian Patent and Trademark Office has established that a request for extension should be submitted within 5 days from the cessation of the legitimate reasons under penalty of preclusion.
Although there is still discussion as to the possible illegal nature of this limitation and although for PCT applications PCT rule 49.6 provides for a minimum time limit of 2 months from the date of removal of the cause of the failure to meet the applicable time limit, if an applicant finds out that a certain statutory deadline was not complied with due to legitimate reasons, whenever possible it is very important that the applicant provides the local counsel with immediate instructions to take the appropriate action in order to comply with the 5-day time limit, thereby avoiding discussions as to the inapplicability of this limitation.