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date: 31 May 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter reviews the emergence of intellectual property (IP) norms in the areas of copyright, trademarks, patents, and designs in Canadian law from the early days of the Dominion’s complex relationship with British IP statutes and policy to a time of progressive independence from those statutes. It then reviews more recent changes, some of which were made to bring Canada’s laws into line with major international registration systems. Canada has also been ready to experiment with variations on IP themes. This is visible both in statutes and in decisions by the Supreme Court of Canada. The impact of the bijural nature of Canada’s legal system and its proximity to the United States are also discussed: Canada has integrated civil law notions into an edifice constructed mostly of common law bricks, and must confront demands from its most important trading partner in adapting its intellectual property framework.

Keywords: Canada, patents, copyright, trademarks, industrial designs, Dominion, intellectual property, bijuralism, history, United States

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