After years of discussions and political battles, the UK leaves the EU on February 1, 2020. However this departure will not have any immediate impact on EU trade marks or designs. A transitional period until at least December 31, 2020 has been fixed during which all the EU rules will still be applied to the UK without any amendments. All EU rights (trademarks and designs) will continue to have effect in the UK, and all proceedings before the EUIPO will continue as before.

At the end of the transitional period, the UK IPO will issue UK rights corresponding to their registered EU trademark or design registrations free-of-charge. For the pending applications, it will be necessary to file separate UK applications for a protection in the UK. However, under current proposals, all such UK applications - if filed within nine months of the date the transition period ends - will enjoy the filing or priority date of the EU application.

As reminder, Brexit will not change the current systems for prosecution, opposition and enforcement of European patents and for prosecution and enforcement of national UK patents.

However, we advise you to review all the agreements designating the European Union to foresee their effect in the U.K.