LAWYERS' DIRECTORY
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QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

What happens if several persons individually create the same invention?
If several persons individually make the same invention, the right to the patent should be entitled to the first applicant.
Can I amend any specification or claim after the issuance of my patent certificate?
No, you can't amend any specification or claim after the issuance of the patent certificate.
Should I pay the whole amount of the share capital of a joint stock company upon incorporation?
No, you can pay a quarter of the value of the company's share capital and commit to pay the remaining amount after a period not exceeding 6 months.
Can the auditor of a partnership limited by shares be appointed from among accredited partners?
No. Auditors may not be appointed from among accredited partners, but may be appointed from among the other partners.
How can I transfer my shares in a Lebanese joint stock company?
In principle, the transfer of shares in a joint stock company to third parties is free from any restrictions, unless the company’s bylaws provide for restrictions such as preemptive rights to existing shareholders. Such transfer takes approximately two to three business days and is not subject to a tax on the capital gains, except when the seller of the shares is a company.
How long does it take to register my limited liability company (SARL)?
The process for registering a limited liability company takes 24 to 48 hours after gathering all the required documents.
What is a design or an industrial design?
As defined by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), "an industrial design is the ornamental or aesthetic aspect of an article. The design may consist of three-dimensional features, such as the shape or surface of an article, or of two-dimensional features, such as patterns, lines or color. Industrial designs are applied to a wide variety of products of industry and handicraft: from technical and medical instruments to watches, jewelry, and other luxury items; from housewares and electrical appliances to vehicles and architectural structures; from textile designs to leisure goods. To be protected under most national laws, an industrial design must appeal to the eye. This means that an industrial design is primarily of an aesthetic nature, and does not protect any technical features of the article to which it is applied."
Am I allowed to represent two different companies in Lebanon that work in the same sector?
If the companies exercise the same economic activity or sell competitive products, you need to notify them and they need to accept. Should you hide to one of them your other representation, the contract is vitiated for fraud.
What if I don't pay the annuity fees charged on my patent?
If you don't pay your patent annuities together with the fine (if due) within the grace period, the patent will lapse.
What does the Patent Office publish in the Official Gazette?
The Patent Office only publishes the Certificate of Registration with the abstract in Arabic.
What is the Banque Du Liban intermediate Circular 331?
The Central Bank of Lebanon implemented Circular 331 with the purpose of incentivizing Lebanese financial institutions (such as banks) to invest in:
• Startups
• Incubators or accelerators, the object of which is limited to supporting the development, success and growth of startups in Lebanon
• Companies whose object is limited to investing venture capital in startups
What are the terms and conditions on a website?
Terms and Conditions are the rules to which one should agree to in order to use a website, mobile application, and other online platforms. Consider your terms and conditions agreement a legally-binding contract between you and the visitors of your website and include all the disclosures you need to keep your website or mobile app away from abuses or misuse, including spam or other fraudulent activities.
What is the minimum capital of a Lebanese offshore company?
The capital of a Lebanese offshore company cannot be less than LBP 30,000,000 or its equivalent in foreign currency.
What is the minimum number of shareholders in a joint stock company?
The number of shareholders in a joint stock company cannot be less than three.
Is it mandatory to use my trademark after I register it?
No, it is not. In fact, it is possible to register a trademark in Arab countries without actually using it. However, trademark rights should be maintained through actual use. Trademark registrations in most of the Arab jurisdictions, including Lebanon and the UAE, for example, can be vulnerable to cancellation in the event of non-use, usually within a period of 3 or 5 years.
As an investor, can I change my mind and cancel my investment?
Yes, you can.