According to the Mexican Copyright Law, the copyright reserves are the best way to obtain the exclusive right to use and exploit titles, names, denominations, psychological characteristics or original operating characteristics, according to its nature.

The categories for copyright reserves considered by this Law are the following: i) periodical publications; ii) periodical diffusions; iii) human, fictional or symbolic characterization; iv) persons or groups related to artistic activities; and v) advertising promotions.

Each one of these categories has a limited validity, starting from the granting of the certificate, with only one year for periodical publications and periodical diffusions, and five years for other categories.

It is important to mention that the copyright reserves are renewable, excepting the advertising promotions, which at the end of their term become part of the public domain that is, its exclusivity will last only the five years of the validity period, without the possibility to be renewed.

Meanwhile, copyright reserves concerning periodical publications; periodical diffusions; human, fictional or symbolic characterization; and to individuals or groups engaged in artistic activities, they may be renewed for the same validity periods indefinitely. This is, with the renewal the copyright reserves may extend their validity for periods of one year in the cases of periodical publications and periodical diffusions, and for five year periods in the cases of human, fictional and symbolic characterization and individuals or groups engaged in artistic activities.

At this point, it is noteworthy that as a condition for renewal, the Authority will require to prove with pertinent evidence the use of the copyright reserves. The time established by the Law for making said renewal is within one month before and one month after the validity date of the copyright reserve. In case the evidence exhibited before the authority does not conclusively demonstrate the use within the validity period, the authority will not grant the renewal.

However, in the cases where the copyright reserves have not been used within the period of validity, or may not have the proper evidence of use, the general recommendation is to proceed with the filing of new copyright reserve applications.

In this case, in order to avoid facing obstacles in its prosecution, the filing of the new copyright reserve must be made while the prior copyright reserve is in effect. That is, within the validity period, without taking in consideration the additional month granted by the Law to renew a copyright reserve, since this time is considered only as a grace period to renew the copyright reserve and not as an extension of the period of protection.

The main intention of this recommendation is that the new copyright reserve is studied while the previously registered copyright reserve remains valid and in force, with the purpose that the previous registration is considered a precedent and also, to be a barrier to other applications from third parties which are in prosecution process, so that in this way the new application will not find barriers or obstacles in its prosecution process.

In any case, our recommendation is to consult with a specialist who can give the necessary support for these procedures and thus, to develop a registration strategy that suits for you.