Perspectives

Brexit: protect your IP in the UK

Readiness for EU holders of Intellectual Property in the United Kingdom

The Withdrawal Agreement concluded between the European Union and the United Kingdom, establishing the terms of the UK's orderly withdrawal from the EU, has an impact on IP rights, such as EU Trademarks and (Un)Registered Community Designs ((U)RCD). However, European Patents or Patent Applications through EPC will not be affected.

Deloitte's IP Advisory Services can assist companies in reviewing their IP Portfolio to safeguard IP rights post-Brexit. Below is an outline of key points regarding trademarks, designs and patents.

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Trademarks

  • For every registered EUTM in the UK register a comparable UK trademark is automatically created.
  • TM owners have Opt-out possibility.
  • For pending EUTM Applications, a UK TM application must be filed with the UKIPO to keep the EU application date. In this case, national UK application fees must be paid.

Deadline to file a UK TM Application

30 September 2021

Designs

  • Registered CD - For every registered and fully published RCD, a comparable national UK Design is automatically created without additional costs, while retaining the application, registration and priority dates of the RCD.
  • RCD owners have Opt-out possibility.
  • Unregistered CD - Unregistered CDs that arose before 31 December 2020 will continue to be protected as an equivalent intellectual property right in the UK.
  • New types of unregistered design rights will be introduced in the UK.
  • Pending CD - Pending Community Design Applications or RCDs under deferred publication on 31 December 2020, can be filed as national UK applications with UKIPO, keeping the EU filing date. In this case, national UK application fees must be paid.

Deadline to file a UK Design Application

30 September 2021

Patents

  • The European Patent Organisation (EPO) is an international organisation established based on the European Patent Convention (EPC). The EPO currently has 38 member states, of which 10 non-EU members. Given that the EPO is not an EU institution, the UK's withdrawal from the EU has no impact on the procedure for obtaining a European patent before the EPO. Representation before the EPO will also remain unaffected.

European Patents or Patent Applications through EPC will not be affected

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