Time to protect your trade marks in Europe

With the government securing an extension until October to agree the terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU, businesses have been given some breathing space to get their affairs in order.

One opportunity this respite provides is ensuring your business has strong trade mark protections, both within the UK and within the EU.

Having a registered trade mark is beneficial because it means your business can take legal action against another person or business if your brand is used without your permission, or if that business uses a sign or symbol that’s identical or similar to your trade mark.

In other words, trade marks can really help in preventing competitors from damaging the reputation or authenticity of your brand.

By registering your trade mark you’re making it harder for businesses to imitate you, therefore building value in your brand and avoiding the unwelcome costs of having to change it if challenged by a competitor.

While it remains somewhat of an unknown what will happen come October 31, and beyond, the UK government has confirmed that businesses with EU trade marks will continue to have protection both in the UK and EU, no matter what happens with Brexit.

Trade marks can really help in preventing competitors from damaging the reputation or authenticity of your brand.

However, what is less certain is the ease of the process of registering a trade mark EU-wide post Brexit.

Therefore, businesses should endeavour to take advantage of the relatively streamlined process available to the UK, as a current member of the EU, to protect their brand across the continent while the opportunity remains open to them.