IPO continues to deal with applications despite “interrupted period”

The UK Intellectual Property Office has pledged to do everything it can to deal with trade mark and design applications during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Although it is attempting to provide some services as usual, it is urging new applicants to use online services wherever possible to avoid delays.

The notice comes after the IPO officially declared the period commencing 24 March 2020 as “interrupted days” until further notice.

This means that any deadlines for patents, supplementary protection certificates, trade marks, designs, and applications for these rights which fall on an interrupted day will be extended to the next non-interrupted day.

In its statement, the IPO said: “For new trade mark examination reports we will allow a four-month default period to respond, not the current two months, hopefully removing the need for an extension; interrupted days still applies to deadlines that fall during the period of interruption,” said the Office.

“We are unable to allow longer default time periods for design examination reports (because they are set by statute), but interrupted days applies to deadlines that fall during the period of interruption, plus extensions are available after that if required.”

It added that extended default time periods for design examination reports cannot be granted, but “interrupted days applies to deadlines that fall during the period of interruption, plus extensions are available after that if required”.

The team at iLaw offers a full range of intellectual property services ranging from registering trade marks and negotiating licences through to obtaining emergency injunctions against infringers when the situation requires. For help and advice, please get in touch with our expert team.