Renewal of IP rights – IPO warning

Posted: 6th April 2012

The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) has issued a warning after some trade mark owners have reported receiving unsolicited reminders from one or more companies that offer to renew their trade marks for fees greatly in excess of the official renewal fees. These often take the form of an official-looking invoice.Stop
The IPO is the only official body that issues reminders for the renewal of a UK intellectual property right. Reminders are sent directly to the registered rights holder or their official representatives. For granted patents, the official renewal reminder is sent approximately six weeks after the date on which the patent should have been renewed. For registered trade marks and designs, the official renewal reminder is sent approximately three months before the renewal payment is due.
Other services offered by the companies behind the unsolicited correspondence are entry in official sounding publications or registers and filing for EU-wide trade mark protection.
The IPO’s advice if you receive any unsolicited invoice is DO NOT PAY IT until you have checked carefully to see what services are being offered and whether it has come from an official source.