New trade mark regulations for UK and EU come into force
New regulations contained in the EU Trade Mark Directive 2015 came into force on 14 January.
The government says the changes are widely supported by users of the UK trade mark system and will be maintained regardless of the outcome of the negotiations surrounding our exit from the European Union.
The changes are designed to support innovation and economic growth by helping to minimise differences between the trade mark frameworks across Europe. They also modernise and future-proof the trade mark system for users.
Some of the key measures relate to:
- the ability to file a trade mark for a sound or motion as an MP3 or MP4 file
- the removal of expired trade marks from search reports
- changes to who can apply for a collective trade mark
- changes to proof of use periods in opposition and invalidation periods
- separate oppositions will now be required to jointly oppose (or invalidate) a trade mark based on earlier rights.
The Trade Mark Directive 2015 will be incorporated into UK law through amendments to the Trade Marks Act. This will align the UK’s trade mark laws more closely with those of the rest of the EU, making it easier for UK businesses to protect their IP rights here and across Europe.
Please contact Jon Alvarez if you would like more information about trade marks and protecting your intellectual property.