The impact of the Brexit on representation of EU trademarks and designs

Since 1 February 2020, the United Kingdom (UK) has withdrawn from the European Union (EU) and has become a “third country”. The Withdrawal Agreement provides for a transition period ending on 31 December 2020. Until that date, EU law in its entirety applies to and in the United Kingdom. It is not yet clear what the consequences are.

 

The negotiation about the Brexit are still ongoing

 

Currently, during the transition period, the EU and the United Kingdom negotiate an agreement on a new partnership. However, it is not certain whether such an agreement will be concluded and will enter into force at the end of the transition period, and it is likely to happen, that the UK will leave the EU with “No Deal”.

The withdrawal agreement provides for the creation of UK equivalent registered EU trademarks and designs post-Brexit to ensure current EU rights continue to cover the UK. However, one of the most import consequences caused by the end of the transition period results in the change of representation.

 

Consequences regarding EUIPO representatives

 

As natural or legal persons having their domicile or principal place of business or a real and effective industrial or commercial establishment in the UK or in another country outside the European Economic Area (EEA) will have to be represented in all proceedings before the EUIPO, other than the filing of an application for an EU trademark or design, as from 1 January 2021 a representative has to be appointed. However, if the UK leaves the EU without a deal, UK representatives will formally lose their rights of representation before the EUIPO on exit and will no longer be able to represent parties as professional representatives before the EUIPO as from 1 January 2021.

Thus, the EUIPO advices to assess the consequences of the end of the transition period and in particular advises natural or legal persons that are domiciled or have their principle place of business or real and effective industrial or commercial establishment in the UK should consider the need to designate in a timely manner a EUIPO representative authorised in accordance with Union law for the purpose of representation before the European Union Intellectual Property Office.

 

We can assist you with your EU trademarks and designs after the Brexit

 

Therefore, in order to avoid potential risk of loss of rights and further complications for companies who have their principal place of business in the UK and/or are represented by UK trademark attorneys, we would be more than willing to address this problem and to assist you with any IP-matter and specially with your trademark und design portfolio.

Since its establishment, our law office has gained extensive experience in all fields of IP matters and is continuously growing to meet our clients’ needs. We would therefore be more than happy to work with you to find the best and most individual solution for your legal case and help you to secure, defend and enforce patents, trademark and design rights as well as copyrights in times of great uncertainties.

 

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