The importance of registering a trade mark before Brexit!

The UK Intellectual property office has released guidance online in the hope of encouraging businesses, organisations and individuals to register trade marks before Brexit.

At the moment the UK has its own registration process under the Trade Mark Act 1994 the current UK statute. The website outlines the process to register a trade mark in the EU. For this to happen the registration must be granted by the EU Intellectual Property office which is governed by EU regulations such as Regulation (EU) 2017/1001 on the EU Trademark.

It is also explained how it is also possible to register trademarks through the international Madrid and Hague systems. These systems allow users to file one application, in one language, and pay one set of fees to protect trademarks in up to 113 territories including the EU.

After March 2019 if there is no Brexit deal made this could mean serious implications for anyone planning on registering a mark or anyone in the process of registration. One of the suggested implications is that applicants may have to refile applications for EU registrability that are pending at the time of Brexit which could lead to administrative burdens and uncertain fees etc.

The Intellectual property office are very clear that the government is doing it all it can to ensure that the property rights in all existing registered EU trademarks will continue to be protected and enforceable in the UK. If however Businesses, organisations or an individual are in the process of making an application to the EU which are ongoing at the point of Brexit they will have a period of 9 months to apply in the UK for the same protections.

The way things are going it is difficult to foresee the outcome of the Brexit negotiations. There is a lot of political uncertainty ahead which makes it very difficult for businesses and organisations to know what to do for the best. It would probably be advisable for anyone in this situation to read further information on the UK intellectual property office website and then contact Lawdit today for further professional advice.

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