Brexit: Consequences for EUTM and RCD holders
The UK Government confirmed that the Brexit transition period will not be extended. What happens next? Since 1 February 2020, the UK is officially no longer an EU Member State. Until the end of the negotiated transition period, this does not have an impact on EU trade marks and designs - all EU rules remain in force in the UK, and all procedures before the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) remain unchanged. On 12 June 2020, the UK Government confirmed that the transition period will end on 31 December 2020. After the end of the transition period, the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) will automatically and free of charge issue a comparable UK registration for all existing registered EU trade marks and registered community designs, including those, designating the EU as a protected territory as part of an international registration. These comparable trade marks and designs will be registered with the same filing date and priority as the existing European registrations. The comparable British registrations will be national rights. Accordingly, to renew them going forward, separate national fees will need to be paid to UKIPO. As regards filed applications for EU Trade Marks and Registered Community Designs, which have not yet been registered at the end of the transition period, separate national applications will need to be filed in the UK and the relevant UK fees will need to be paid. If these national applications are filed within 9 months of the end of the transition period, they will benefit from the original filing date and priority of the existing European applications. These national applications will require a separate examination by the UKIPO under UK law. If you have questions on intellectual property and Brexit, and how your business might be impacted, contact our team for expert advice.