Continued IP services by Haseltine Lake following Britain's decision to leave the EU

24 June 2016

Following Britain’s decision to leave the European Union (EU) – there will be no changes in the range of IP services provided by Haseltine Lake throughout Europe. 

  • The result of the British referendum of 23 June 2016 is now known and Britain has decided to leave the European Union.
  • The precise terms and nature of Britain’s exit from the EU will be negotiated and agreed over a period of up to 2 years. In the interim Britain remains a fully participating member of the EU.
  • When the UK eventually leaves the EU it will remain part of the European Patent Convention and therefore fully part of the current system of patents granted by the European Patent Office (EPO). There are already a number of non-EU countries, such as Switzerland and Norway which participate fully in the European Patent system and Britain will become another such country.
  • Haseltine Lake is a pan-European firm with offices in Munich and The Hague and qualified European Patent Attorneys operating in all its locations, including the UK. Britain’s new status outside the EU will not change our firm-wide focus on the protection of European IP rights. 
  • In particular Haseltine Lake will continue to provide full services for:
    • European Patents
    • Community Trade Marks and Designs
    • National Patent, Trade Mark and Design filings in the UK, Germany, Netherlands and Belgium.
    • The new Unitary Patent (when eventually introduced).
  • It is anticipated that the exit of Britain from the EU may cause some delays to the introduction to the new Unitary Patent (UP) system in the EU. When the UP Patent is introduced it will still be founded on the current EPO system. Prosecution of a patent will proceed as presently and after grant there will be the option to designate the UK (and other countries that are not participating in the UP system) at the same time as electing for a UP designation for those countries that are within the UP system.

As the detailed political negotiations around Britain’s exit from the EU progress, Haseltine Lake will continue to monitor the position and will provide information and advice to help clients to understand the impact on their IP rights and to prepare accordingly.

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