Legal Environment

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In this page: Business Contract | Intellectual Property | Legal Framework of Business | International Dispute Resolution

 

Business Contract

General Observation
You must define precisely the obligations of each party and determine where your cooperation begins and ends. Give great importance to the means that the contracting party must set up and to defining the methods of quality control and the performance bond.
Law Applicable to the Contract
You must be particularly vigilant about the law applicable to the contract and the methods of settling disputes. Argentina is a signatory to the Vienna Convention on international contracts. It is not easy for a foreigner to understand Argentine law, so it is recommended that international laws be used or an arbitration system be called on. International laws are generally accepted in contracts concluded with Argentine companies.
It is also important to stipulate in the contract under which jurisdiction the parties are placed.
Advisable Incoterms
Two types of incoterm are often used with Argentina: FOB or CFR. If you are used to international trade, you should take care of the transport yourself for preference.
Language of Domestic Contract
Spanish.
Other Laws Which Can Be Used in Domestic Contracts
None.

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Intellectual Property

National Organisations
The organisation in charge of trademark and patent protection in Argentina is the National Institute for Industrial Property (INPI). The organisation in charge of intellectual property is the "Registro Nacional de la Propiedad Intelectual" (the National Register of Intellectual Property). Other organisations are also involved in intellectual property include the: Ministry of Justice, National Directorate of Royalties, Argentine Society of Authors and Composers (SADAIC), General Society of Argentine Authors (Argentores), Argentine Association of Interpreters (AADI), Argentine Chamber of Producers and the Argentine Chamber of Music Editors (CAEM).

Argentina has signed the Paris Convention for the Protection of Intellectual Property, but is not a signatory to the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT). A company wishing to use a patent is obliged to make a direct request in Argentina within a maximum time limit of one year after the registration of the initial request.

Regional Organisations
Each of the member states of Mercosur has its own body (or bodies) tasked with protecting intellectual property rights; however, the Mercosur Standardisation Association is working on fostering cooperation among these institutions to achieve harmonisation within Mercosur.
International Membership
Member of the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization)
Signatory to the Paris Convention For the Protection of Intellectual Property
Membership to the TRIPS agreement - Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS)
 

National Regulation and International Agreements

 
Type of property and law Validity International Agreements Signed
Patent
 
Patent Law (1966)
Initial period of validity of 3 years, may be extended by a period of 20 years in the term of initial period.
Trademark
 
Marque Trademark Law (1980)
10 years, renewable on condition of being marketed within 5 years of registration. Trademark Law Treaty
Design
 
Industrial Model and Design Law (1983)
5 years, renewable once.  
Copyright
 
Ley 11.723 (235), Propiedad Intelectual
Valid for the entire life of the author and 30 years after his/her death. Berne convention For the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works
Convention for the Protection of Producers of Phonograms Against Unauthorized Duplication of Their Phonograms
Rome ConventionFor the Protection of Performers, Producers of Phonograms and Broadcasting Organizations
WIPO Copyright Treaty
WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty
Industrial Models
 
Industrial Model and Design Law
(1983)
5 years, renewable once.  

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Legal Framework of Business

Equity of Judgments

Equal Treatment of Nationals and Foreigners
Foreign nationals can benefit from equal treatment in judicial matters, including in commercial disputes. Corruption has been reported in the judicial system.
The Language of Justice
Spanish
Recourse to an Interpreter
It is possible and advised.
Legal Similarities
The country's legal system is a combination of the American and Western European systems. Each province also has its own constitution, which mirrors the broad lines of the structures of the federal constitution. The country has not accepted the obligatory jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice (ICJ). Argentina belongs to Mercosur, which has some supranational legislative functions.
 

The Different Legal Codes

 
Contract and property law Código Civil (Civil Code)
Customs law Código Aduanero (Customs Code)
Company law Código de Comercio (Commercial Code)
Penal law Código Penal (Penal Code)
Civil and commercial judicial code Código Procesal Civil y Comercial
Penal judicial code Código Procesal Penal
Military justice code Código de Justicia Militar
Aeronautical code Código Aeronáutico
Mining code Código de Minería
Argentine food code Código Alimentario Argentino
 
Checking National Laws Online
Legal Library of the Ministry of Justice
Other Useful Resources
Infoleg, legislative information
Argentine system of judicial information
Department of Legislative Informations (in Spanish)
The ministry of justice, security and human rights website (in Spanish)
Country Guides
Country Guide Lexmundi
 

The Jurisdictions

 
Justicia Federal; Justicia Nacional en lo Civil y Comercial; y Justicia Nacional en lo Criminal y Correccional Disputes relative to the Civil Code
Justicia Nacional del Trabajo Disputes relative to the Labor Code
Poder Judicial de la Nación Ministry of Justice
 
 

Court Officials

Prosecutor
The public officer who is in charge of the criminal investigation.
Defensa
Lawyers under contract to the plaintiffs or the defendants.
Perito
An expert accredited to the Court.
Actuario judicial
Responsible for the identity of the different actors, the documents provided in the report, etc.
Presidente del Tribunal
Responsible for the smooth running of the hearings, the verdict and the sentences.
 
 

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International Dispute Resolution

Arbitration
Arbitration is a way to solve disputes in Argentina. It consists in bringing in an arbitrator who will have to make the final decision.
Arbitration Law
Centro de mediacion y arbitraje comercial de la Camara Argentina de Comercio (arbitration regulation)
Conformity to International Commercial Arbitration Rules
Party to the New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards.
Party to the Geneva Protocol on Arbitration Clauses.
Party to the Geneva Convention of the Execution of Foreign Arbitral Awards.
Appointment of Arbitrators
Composed of three permanent arbitrators appointed by the Consejo de la bolsa de comercio de Buenos Aires (Council of the Trade Exchange of Buenos Aires) by competitive examination and who act as arbitrators and conciliators.
Arbitration Procedure
Any person or company facing a dispute can resort to arbitration on condition that both parties wish to resort to this procedure. The sentence decided by the arbitrators is not binding.
For further information, consult the website of SICE, Sistema de Informacion sobre Comercio Exterior (Information System for foreign trade).
Permanent Arbitration Bodies
Argentine Chamber of Commerce (Sectors Covered: All sectors)

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Latest Update: June 2022