Barker Brettell: it’s business as usual as UK declares Brexit

Now that the UK has decided to leave the European Union (EU), what impact will that have on Intellectual Property (IP) rights in the UK?

In the short term, the answer is none. Today’s decision is merely the outcome of public opinion and, for now, there will be no immediate impact on IP. There will be a period of at least two years during which there will be no change, and after this EU membership is expected to be replaced with new trade arrangements such as continued membership of the EEA. The UK will continue to trade with its close European neighbours.

Getting patents granted in Europe is entirely unaffected by Brexit as the European Patent Office is not an EU institution and operates independently. Provisions relating to EU Trade Marks and Community Registered Designs, which currently extend to the UK, are expected be made to ensure continuity of rights holders. There is no suggestion or indication that any rights will be lost as a result of Brexit.

Inevitably change will soon occur, but at Barker Brettell we have always embraced change. To us, a 150-year old firm with one of the UK’s biggest IP prosecution teams, change often signals a new period of opportunity, innovation and creativity. Rest assured, we have provisions in place to help our clients navigate this period of transition with minimal cost and impact to their businesses.