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Brexit's potential impact on Intellectual Property in the UK

Date: 28 October 2019



The UK is set to leave the European Union following the referendum result of June 2016. The bewildering journey of Brexit is not yet over, but where are we exactly?


Please note: Brexit is a fast-moving story and we endeavour to update our documents as soon as information changes. Nevertheless, please contact one of our attorneys to ensure you receive the most up-to-date information.


Timeline of Brexit dates:


  • 23 June 2016 – Referendum result in favour of leaving the European Union.
  • 29 March 2017 – United Kingdom triggered the legal process of leaving the European Union, starting a 2-year negotiation period.
  • November 2018 – draft Withdrawal Agreement reached between UK government and EU.
  • January to March 2019 – UK Parliament rejected the 1st draft agreement.
  • 29 March 2019 – Original planned leaving date, now extended.
  • 17 October 2019 - draft New Withdrawal Agreement reached between UK government and EU.
  • 31 January 2020 – new flexible extension date.


Current position on Brexit:


A New Withdrawal Agreement has been agreed by the UK government with the EU. The deal is awaiting approval by the UK and EU parliaments. If approved, the UK will leave the EU on or before the new flexible extension date of 31 January 2020.


If no deal has been agreed by the next extension date, the UK may leave without a deal, seek a further extension, or revoke the legal process of leaving the EU.


What does Brexit mean for Intellectual Property rights?


Trade Marks & Designs

EU Trade Marks and Designs rights holders in the UK may see changes to the rights they own. The changes are highly dependent on whether we leave the EU with or without a deal. Follow the links below for more detailed information:


Trade Marks & Designs if Brexit deal agreed


Trade Marks & Designs after no-deal Brexit



European patents protection will continue, regardless of whether we leave the EU with or without a deal, because European patent organisations and laws are independent from the EU. Follow the links below for more detailed information:


Patents if a Brexit deal is agreed


Patents after a no deal Brexit



For further information about intellectual property and Brexit, visit our Brexit Resources page or get in touch with a member of our team

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