The UKIPO has announced that the address for service rules in the UK will change from 1 January 2021 onwards, subject to the necessary legislation being enacted by then.
As things stand, it is possible to represent clients before the UKIPO with an address for service anywhere in the EEA. The amended rules will mean it will be necessary to have a UK address for service for any new application, new opposition and for any other proceedings already covered by the existing address for service rules, which are instigated after the end of the Transition Period on 31 December 2020. However, a UK address for service will not be required for renewals of registered or granted rights. Moreover, the new rules will include transitional provisions allowing EEA Attorneys to continue to represent clients in ongoing cases in the UK where they were the address for service before the UKIPO at the end of 2020. The rules will also take account of Article 55(2) of the Withdrawal Agreement between the UK and the EU which allows EEA Attorneys to be the address for service in the UK, at least until the end of 2023, for cloned UK registrations created on 1 January 2021 corresponding to registered EU rights. More detailed guidance will follow when the legislation has been published.
Assuming the necessary legislation is enacted by 1 January 2021, any new UK applications corresponding to EU applications which are still pending at the end of December 2020 will require a UK address for service.
Abel + Imray have established offices in both the UK and the EU with duly qualified Attorneys in those jurisdictions. We will therefore be able to represent clients before both the UKIPO and the EUIPO after Brexit in relation to all matters.