The Intellectual Property Registration Office (CIPC) oversees the registration of various types of intellectual property including that of trademarks, copyright, designs, and patents. The CIPC is located in Pretoria where all  intellectual property applications are lodged. Although with most works protected under the copyright laws of South Africa, you will not be able to apply for copyright registration as it is automatically implied the moment the work is put into tangible form, you need to apply formally at the Intellectual Property Registration Office for registration of copyright on a film or video for commercial use.

Several forms which can be obtained from the Intellectual Property Registration Office should be completed in duplicate including the RF1, RF2, RF3, and RF9 which should be submitted together with a “Statement of Case”. When making use of attorneys to file the applications, you must provide the lawyers with a Power of Attorney letter, which will be submitted at the Intellectual Property Registration Office.

It is a non-investigating patent office, meaning that although a formal examination is made regarding the patent application that the responsibility rests with the applicant to ensure complete novelty, meeting of the various requirements, and correct wording of the claims. As such it is imperative to make use of intellectual property attorneys to help ensure that all of the above requirements are met when filing a patent application.

A patent search can be done online via the Intellectual Property Registration Office website. One can search the patent databases at CIPC (CIPRO) which stands for the Companies Intellectual Property Registration Office by means of keywords, titles, and inventors.

Although a patent may not be present or pending in the CIPC (CIPRO) database, it can still be mentioned in a trade journal. With that in mind the intellectual property attorneys conduct an extremely thorough patent search making use of various databases and sources.

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