Having recently established an office in Portugal, Hiddleston Trade Marks is ideally positioned to help your company through Brexit and beyond, says founder Mark Hiddleston.
Like many fields, trade mark applicants have been facing major problems in registering and protecting their marks during the Covid-19 lockdown period. Most trade mark offices worldwide went into lockdown, including the UK and European intellectual property offices. The UK Intellectual Property Office was closed from 24 March and announced that all deadlines on trade mark cases would be extended ultimately up to 29 July. Other trade mark offices around the world have adopted similar approaches. This is entirely understandable, but it does mean that applicants looking to obtain registration quickly so that they can press on with a trade mark project have faced big delays.
This is the bad news. However, the good news is that this has given applicants and trade mark proprietors an opportunity at present to review their trade mark protection.
Beyond the transition period
For those wishing to register and protect their marks in the EU, another consideration is of course Brexit. According to the most likely outcome, at present, the “transition period” during which European Union Trade Marks (EUTMs) continue to extend to the UK will cease from 31 December 2020. Although the UK Trade Marks Office has indicated that they will create a “UK right” equivalent to an EUTM as of the end of this transition period for any existing EUTM registrations, this does not apply to pending EUTM Applications. Instead, EUTM applications will have a nine-month priority period in which to claim priority in relation to a subsequent UK trade mark application. This and a number of other issues raised by Brexit, creates challenges for trade mark proprietors wishing to continue to trade and protect their mark in both the UK and EU.
Hiddleston Trade Marks have recently established an office in Portugal. As such, we are ideally positioned to advise both in relation to the protection and registration of trade marks in the UK and as EUTMs.
We are a specialist firm of trade mark attorneys. What sets us apart is our adaptability to the needs of our client base. Passionate about trade mark work, we pull out all the stops when protecting the interests of our clients. We are responsive and flexible in our approach and look forward to working with you.