When Brexit came into effect on the 1st January 2021 it changed matters on the IP scene.  We have been monitoring proceedings over the past year and provide here an update.

Since a European Union (EU) trade mark registration no longer covers the United Kingdom (UK), a separate application is required in the UK and the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) has experienced a large increase in the number of UK trade mark applications.  While in 2020 127,000 UK trade mark applications were filed, 2021 saw a 54% increase with the number of new UK trade mark applications rising to 195,000.

While additional staff were recruited to deal with the increased workload of the UKIPO  in large number of new national UK applications, as well as dealing with the increase in renewals and an influx of requests to change the address for services, due to the need to have an address for services in the United Kingdom rather than in the EEA, the usually proficient UKIPO struggled to cope with under the immense pressure which resulted in their time targets from slipping.  Thankfully the UKIPO’s usual level of service appears to be returning, in most cases, to its pre-Brexit standards.

The UK Government also conducted a consultation on the exhaustion regime and concluded further information was required and there would be no change to the UK’s exhaustion regime at the moment.  This means that goods, in which there is Intellectual Property imbued, first placed on the market in the EU can be exported to the UK without the consent of the owner of the intellectual property. However, be warned, if such goods are first placed on the market in the UK and are to be exported to the EU, the consent of the owner of the intellectual property is required.

You can read more about the exhaustion of IP rights in the UK here and find more about our understanding of this particular issue in relation to Northern Ireland on our Dublin branch website here.

Should you need assistance with this, or any IP matter, in the UK, Ireland, the EU or further afield, please contact us at info@ansons.co.uk