24 July 2017
Reporter: Barney Dixon

CITMA calls for continuation of rights post-Brexit

The Chartered Institute of Trade Mark Attorneys (CITMA) is calling for all of its members to be able to continue to represent clients at the EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) after Brexit.

In a position paper published on 20 July, the association outlined its position on Brexit, defining rights of representation before the EUIPO as “unquestionably one of the most important issues for our profession right now”.

“For UK and international businesses, in particular the creative industries, it is vital that the UK retains strong trademark and design systems post-Brexit, and that the cost and disruption to owners of existing EU trademark and design rights is minimised,” it said.

CITMA also wants these rights to be extended to the European General Court and the Court of Justice of the EU to “allow [attorneys] to represent their clients at all levels of the justice system”.

Another key issue for CITMA is the alteration of the EU trademark and design systems to cover the UK post-Brexit, though it recognised this may not be possible. In that case, the institute asked that the UK government enter all existing EU trademarks onto UK registers with the same scope of protection with zero or minimal cost.

“It is vital that these businesses can be given certainty that they will not experience a loss of protection in the UK, and that the cost of maintaining their protection, both in terms of fees and business time, will be kept to a minimum.”

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