Intellectual Property

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Intellectual Property

Our job is to protect your Intellectual Property rights.

We have a thriving and dedicated Intellectual Property department that handles; trademark and patent application procedures, declarations of use and renewal of the same, due diligence, licensing, franchising, merchandising agreements and anti-counterfeiting.

We also handle African Regional Intellectual Property Organisation (ARIPO) registrations. ARIPO is an inter-governmental organization that grants and administers Intellectual Property titles on behalf of its member states. These are nineteen in total at present: Botswana, The Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Nambia, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Swaziland, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

We handle protection of trademarks, patents, industrial designs, copyrights and their neighbouring rights as well as layout designs.We advise the authors, owners of copyrights on the conceiving and publishing of original and derivative works, specifically literary works, industrial and graphical designs and computer software.

We have also enforced and defended Intellectual Property rights in matters involving violations, infringement and exploitation in Uganda for; patents, trademarks, trade secrets, copyrights, antitrust and unfair competition. We render legal opinions on the strengths and weaknesses of a given mark or patent, negotiate license agreements and offer advice for the management of worldwide patent portfolios. It is noteworthy that KATS successfully handled the first unfair competition and predatory pricing action in Uganda.

Our team has significant experience in advising companies and employees accused of misappropriating trade secrets or confidential information of other companies and former employees. We assist our clients to develop and implement hiring policies, due diligence checklists when engaging top employees from competitors, conduct audits of existing trade secrets (if at all) in a company’s Intellectual Property portfolio to recognise potential vulnerabilites or risks.

We have advised on the drafting of and amendments to the following domestic intellectual property legislation: the Trademarks Act, the Copyright and Neighbouring Rights Act, the Patents Act and the Counterfeit Goods Bill 2007.

We have participated in the Uganda Inter-Institutional Trade Committee under the Ministry of Trade and Tourism and conducted a pilot project on improving Intellectual Property technical cooperation for Least Developed Countries to facilitate the implementation of the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) Agreement.

With the advent of social media, we are on hand to ensure our clients are in the loop with this constantly evolving mode of transaction and are adequately protected. In this vein we are available to draft employee and corporate social media policies, advise on Intellectual Property issues related to social media platforms, give counsel on advertising and representations made online and on social media. Our capacity to provide relevant and timely advice on these cutting edge issues is due to our lawyers’ commitment to stay abreast of legal and technical trends.

Key Contacts

Jane F. Akiteng
Soogi K. Katende