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31 January 2020

IP Rights After Brexit

The Brexit agreement does ensure existing IP rights the EU and UK are preserved.  We have been keeping in touch with our network of Associates in UK and Europe throughout the “divorce” process, to ensure our advice remains current in this changing situation.


Patents are not affected by Brexit at all, because the European patent process is established by a separate treaty, of which the UK remains a member.


Trade marks and registered designs are now subject to a transitional period which is scheduled to end on 31 December 2020.


Anyone who has a European registration at the end of the transitional period will automatically be granted a separate equivalent registration in the UK.  (However, if you obtained your European registration as part of an International Registration under the Madrid Protocol, the new UK registration will not be recognised as part of the International Registration.)


For now, it is still possible to file for protection in Europe and cover UK, but only if the application proceeds to registration by the end of the year.


If the UK is a market of interest, you should ensure you have protection there.  We can assist with reviewing your existing protection strategy, to ensure it remains appropriate in the post-Brexit environment.  Contact Virginia Nichols to arrange a consultation.