Impact of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU – EUTMs and RCDs
Updated 11 September 2020
In accordance with the Withdrawal Agreement concluded between the EU and the UK (read the latest news here), the UK left the EU on 1 February 2020.
However, the Withdrawal Agreement stipulates that during a transition period that will last until 31 December 2020, EU law remains applicable to and in the UK. This extends to the EUTM and RCD Regulations and their implementing instruments.
This continued application of the EUTM Regulations and the RCD Regulations during the transition period includes, in particular, all substantive and procedural provisions as well as the rules concerning representation in proceedings before the EUIPO. In consequence, all proceedings before the Office that involve grounds of refusal pertaining to the territory of the UK, earlier rights originating from the UK, or parties/representatives domiciled in the UK will run as they did previously, until the end of the transition period.
As regards the situation as from 1 January 2021, this section contains the relevant information on how the EUIPO intends to handle the circumstances that the EUTM and RCD Regulations will cease to apply to the UK as from the end of the transition period.
The content of this section contains information sourced from the following documents:
11 September, 2020Communication No 2/2020 of the Executive Director of the Office of 10 September 2020 on the impact of United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union on certain aspects of the practice of the Office11 September, 2020Impact of the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union on the European Union trade mark and the Community design of 10 September 2020 (Q & A document)18 June, 2020Notice to stakeholders (updated 18-06-2020)
Special attention is drawn to the following:
EUIPO will invite only rights holders domiciled outside the EU/EEA to appoint a representative, should this become necessary. Such invitation will only be made where such a need actually occurs. This will be the case where the right in question is, or becomes, subject to proceedings before the Office.
Rights holders domiciled in the EU/EEA will not be invited by EUIPO to appoint a representative. Such rights holders who wish to be represented in the proceedings before the EUIPO which are initiated after the end of the transition period, that is as from 1 January 2021, will therefore need to appoint a new representative on their own motion in case that their appointed representative has lost his or her capacity to act before EUIPO as the result of the end of the transition period. Failing this, EUIPO will notify any communication or procedural document directly to the rights holder domiciled in the EU/EEA.
No individual notifications will, in principle, be issued by EUIPO to EUTM and RCD applicants, right holders and professional representatives outside pending proceedings before the Office.
Representatives who lose their capacity to act before EUIPO as the result of the end of the transition period will be (i) automatically removed from all files in EUTM and RCD related proceedings, (ii) deleted from EUIPO’s database of representatives (and, where applicable, from the Office’s list of professional representatives), and (iii) not be able to send mail in relation to a file through the EUIPO’s “UserArea”. An exception will only apply where, and to the extent that, such a representative continues to act in so-called ‘ongoing proceedings’ (Art. 97 Withdrawal Agreement),
This information supersedes all previous information on the impact of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU as regards EUTMs and RCDs published on this website.