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How Brexit affects your trademarks and designs

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22 January 2021

Since January 31, 2020 (Brexit day), the United Kingdom is no longer an EU Member and the first phase of Brexit came to an end on December 31, 2020. Before December 31, 2020, European legislation was still in force in the United Kingdom and with it all European trademarks and Community designs; since January 1, 2021 however, these European intellectual rights have no effect in the United Kingdom anymore.

Nevertheless, all European trademarks and Community designs that were registered on December 31, 2020 have been automatically cloned into an identical UK trademark or design registration, without any fees or formalities being due but preserving priority, filing, registration and expiration date of the corresponding European trademarks and Community designs. As of January 1, 2021, we monitor not only the expiration dates of the European trademarks and Community designs under our care but also the expiration dates of the corresponding registrations in the United Kingdom. The cloned UK registrations do not require an address for service in the United Kingdom before December 31, 2024.

European applications and designations of the European Union in international trademark or design registrations that were not finally registered on December 31, have not been automatically cloned into identical trademark or design applications in the United Kingdom. Such applications can, however, be reaffirmed in the United Kingdom with preservation of the priority and filing date of the corresponding EU applications during a second phase of Brexit. To do so, the applications must be re-filed with the United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office, while claiming rights emanating from the corresponding European applications. The second phase of the Brexit expires on September 30, 2021; after September 30, 2021, it will no longer be possible to claim rights emanating from the corresponding European applications anymore.

Please rest assured that if your trademark and/or design applications are affected in any way by these new regulations, we will contact you as soon as possible. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out via tmdesign@dcp-ip.com. We would be happy to help!

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