A new trade mark opposition procedure was launched by the UKIPO last month in response to concerns that SMEÂs are deterred from issuing proceedings, due to the cost and administrative burden of filing an opposition. The new procedure has the following benefits:
- Reduced costs.
- Less complexity.
- Reduced duration of proceedings.
The official filing fee for an opposition has been reduced from Â£200.00 to Â£100.00 and a decision in relation to an opposition is now estimated to be made within 6 months (as opposed to the previous 12 months).Â
The procedure is available where the grounds for opposition lie under sections 5(1) and (2) of the Trade Marks Act 1994 i.e. in situations where there is a conflict with an existing registered trade mark.
Trademark owners wishing to file oppositions using the fast track procedure will however be limited to basing their oppositions on a maximum of three prior registrations, if any of the registrations exceed 5 years, Âevidence of useÂ will have to be submitted with the filling of the opposition.
The UKIPO will always notify the owner of a registered trade mark of a new potentially conflicting application. Received notice of a mark that may conflict with yours? Get in touch!