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UK country IP guide: now for Turkey

UK Intellectual Property Office has published new guide – Intellectual property in Turkey. This is an independent report commissioned by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO). The guide briefly explains the main key points for those interested in the field of intellectual property in relation to Turkey.

IP rights in Turkey are divided into two categories: unregistered and registered rights. Unregistered rights exist automatically when you create a piece of eligible work, whereas you must apply for registered rights from the relevant authority. The following IP rights are recognised in Turkey: industrial property rights relating to inventions (patents and utility models); trademarks; industrial designs; geographical indications; integrated circuit topographies; copyright and trade secrets.

Copyright is a form of IP protection that protects written, dramatic or artistic works. It prevents work being copied or used without the authorisation of the copyright owner. You do not need to file a particular application to gain this protection, it exists automatically when the work is created. For copyright to apply, the work must be original and not copied from another source. It must also be fixed, eg written down or recorded. It cannot simply be an idea for a piece of work. To prevent any loss of rights, a time stamp can help prove the time of creation.

In Turkey, you can acquire a time stamp from 3 different places: Ministry of Culture; Notary Public; Companies offering electronic sealing or stamping services. Registration with the Ministry of Culture provides proof to help identify ownership and creation date for a piece of work. You need to submit your work and details such as the creation and disclosure time to the Ministry of Culture. Work can be certified by a notary public. You need to submit your work content before the authorized notary to get a legalised approval seal, including time of creation. You can also acquire a time stamp through e-sealing applications. These systems add a time stamp to each document.

You may monitor for infringements through Customs, by filing a form based on registered trademarks, patents or industrial designs. This procedure is for monitoring both imported and exported goods. There is not an official mechanism to monitor the internal market; right holders usually monitor their IP rights themselves or with the assistance of an investigation firm. After detecting a possible infringement or piracy, you may initiate an infringement or unfair competition action in order to prohibit use and to request compensation.

The rest of details, as to trademarks, patents and designs you can read in full.