Current Developments in the field of Intellectual Property Law amid the COVID-19 Pandemic

A discomforting new danger hovers around the world, putting lives at risk, life-altering personal and professional routines, and unsettling the global economy. Amidst the COVID-19 crisis, intellectual property (IP) attorneys, like everyone else, are adjusting to a new reality and facing new challenges – figuring out how to keep going while trying to mitigate effects of the crisis with resilience and calm.

Doctors, scientists, and many corporations are pledging not to enforce patents against individuals and companies using products and services directed to addressing the fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic. India’s coronavirus cases have crossed 26,000, and governments – Central as well as states – are bracing up to face possible surge in infections requiring large scale hospitalisations and intensive care units (ICUs).

Efforts are also on war-footing to procure more protective gears, diagnostic kits, ventilators and so on. One missing piece could be the country’s preparedness to build local capabilities to supply intellectual property rights (IPR) protected products, ingredients or spare parts that are essential in the fight against COVID-19, if the situation warrants it.

With the present situation of the Novel Coronavirus at hand and the lockdown situation in India, various courts, tribunals and other judicial bodies have taken different steps for functioning amidst the unprecedented situation. The Intellectual Property Offices including the Trademark office, Copyright Office, Patent Office and Design Office have issued various notifications regarding scheduled hearings and also document submissions.

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