The UK May Exit The EU – What This Could Mean For Your EU & UK Intellectual Property

 

Brexit and your UK and EU Intellectual Property Rights

On June 23rd 2016, the United Kingdom has voted in a referendum in favor of ‘BREXIT’, an exit from the European Union. This could potentially impact your intellectual property rights both across the United Kingdom as well as the European Union. Some of the key points to note are:

 

Trademarks

  • EU: Trademarks Registered or Recently Filed Within The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) which currently cover all 28 EU members, including the UK territory shall continue to remain protected until new regulations are defined.
  • UK: Trademarks Registered or Recently Filed Within The United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) will remain unaffected and will continue to be protected in the UK under the current UK laws. 

 

Patents

  • EUROPE: Patents Filed Within The European Patent Office (EPO) are unaffected as they are based on international agreements between European countries and are not part of the EU framework.
  • UK: Patents Filed Within The United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) are unaffected and will continue to be protected in the UK under the current UK laws.

 

Registered Designs

  • EU: Designs Registered or Filed Recently Within The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) which currently cover all 28 EU members, including the UK territory shall continue to remain protected until new regulations are defined.
  • UK: Designs Registered or Filed Recently Within The United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) will remain unaffected and will continue to be protected in the UK under the current IP laws.

 

What To Expect In The Next Coming Months?

No major changes are expected in the short term until the UK triggers “Article 50” under the Treaty on European Union. Once Article 50 is triggered, the UK has up to two years to negotiate their exit from the European Union. During the course of these two years there will be changes to address UK’s exit from the EU. New processes are likely to be defined to continue protection of your Intellectual Property in case of those protected through EUIPO. It remains uncertain at this very moment if the division of protected intellectual property between the UK and the rest of the EU countries will be automatically transferred or would need to be reapplied for.

 

Next Steps

LegalForce RAPC Worldwide will keep you informed on any changes in regulations and will continue to act on your behalf before the EPO, UKIPO and EUIPO. Should you plan on filing a trademark in the EU and if the UK market is of importance to your business, you can file for both regions separately here: United Kingdom & European Union

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