International and Community Mark Conflict Notification Opt-Ins for UKIPO Due October 20
Under its changes to the trademark examination process on relative grounds that started on October 1, 2007, the UK Intellectual Property Office will no longer refuse to register a new trade mark application because of an earlier conflicting trade mark, unless the owner of the earlier mark successfully opposes the new application. However, the UKIPO will still search the relevant registers and send their search results to the applicant as part of the examination process.
If after receiving the search results, the applicant decides to continue with the application, the UKIPO will also write to the owners of any earlier conflicting UK filed trade marks and International trade marks designating (covering) the UK that are identified in the search, and automatically notify them of the later-filed conflicting marks when the conflicting application is published in the Trade Marks Journal.
However, owners of Community Trade Marks and International Trade Marks designating the European Community must OPT-IN in order to receive these conflicting trademark notifications by completing electronic form TM6 on the UKIPO website, and paying a fee of GBP £50 per mark that will cover a period of 3 years.
If your OPT-IN request is filed and processed by October 20, 2007, then you will be eligible to receive notifications with respect to the first applications to be published under the new examination system on October 26, 2007 in Journal No. 6707.