HOW WILL BREXIT AFFECT IP RIGHTS?
Patents (both UK and European patents) will be on the whole unaffected by the UK’s departure from the EU.
Trade marks and designs
EU Trade Marks (EUTMs), Registered Community Designs (RCDs) and Unregistered Community Designs (UCDs) will be affected when the UK leaves the EU.
Whether or not a deal is reached, both the EU and the UK government agree that existing right-holders should not lose out. The draft agreement (‘deal’) on the withdrawal of the UK from the EU indicates that both the UK and EU favour providing EUTM and RCD holders with an equivalent right once the UK leaves.
The UK government has also confirmed that it will protect the rights of EU trade mark and design holders, even in the event of a ‘no deal’. As such, all holders of existing registered EUTMs and RCDs will be automatically granted an equivalent UK right. This will involve an automatic ‘cloning’ of the existing registration, at no cost to the right holder. However, pending applications will need to be re-filed within a 9 month period.
Whatever happens we’re making it our business to ensure you have all the information needed to help your business navigate Brexit over the coming years.
You can keep up to date on Brexit by visiting our dedicated Brexit site.