Industrial Property in Morocco is governed by the law No. 17-97 dated December 18, 2004, as amended and completed by the two subsequent laws Nos. 31-05 of February 20, 2006 and the law 23-13 implemented on December 18, 2014.
The IP law was drafted to be in full compliance with the international standards adopted by the Paris Convention and the TRIPS Agreement to which Morocco is member state.
Patent applications are granted for a validity period of 20 years as from filing date.
The criteria of an invention which could be patentable are:
A preliminary search report coupled with a written opinion on the patentability of the invention is drafted and issued by the PTO, on the grounds of claims, specification and drawings eventually. The report refers to citations that constitute prior art.
The applicant should submit a response to the Search Report, within a delay of three months as from date of notification.
A final Report on patentability of invention is issued in light of the patentee’s amendments, the result of which can be as follows:
In case of violation of the principle of unity of invention, it is possible to apply for a divisional patent application at the initiative of the applicant before grant, or at the request of the Moroccan PTO after issuance of the preliminary search report on patentability.
In case of plurality of inventions, the PTO notifies the applicant, who should divide or limit his application, within three months as from date of notification.
Divisional patents cannot exceed the scope of the initial invention, and maintain the same filing date and priority, if any, of the initial application.
They undergo the same treatment of the initial application.
Pursuant to the provisions of article 50.1 to 50.5 of the law No. 23-13 amending and completing the basic law No. 17-97, the Applicant of a patent filed after March 1, 2015 before the European Patent Office (EPO) is entitled to request its protection also in Morocco at the time of filing, among other countries, after payment of the relevant taxes to the EPO.
In order to enjoy protection in Morocco, the applicant should submit to the TMO the granted claims in Arabic or French, within a delay of 3 months as from publication of the validated patent.
The letter patent documents attesting grant of the application are issued by the PTO at the request of the patentee, after payment of the relevant taxes.
Annuities become due for payment after grant of the patent application.