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Enhancements to Trade Mark Services

In February 2013, we are implementing a new IT system for processing Trade Marks. It will see the introduction of electronic case handling and workflow which, following the bedding-in period, will result in processing efficiencies.

This is also being used as an opportunity to introduce some customer enhancements, based on feedback we have received, including more user friendly access to information and web services.

Changes are to be implemented in two phases, with approximately a 6 week gap between the phases.

Phase 1 enhancements to Trade Mark Services

Notice of Threatened Opposition - New layout e-form TM7A which should be used for filing notices of threatened opposition.

Notice of Opposition and Statement of Grounds - New layout of form TM7 and available in PDF fillable format.

New Style Examination Report - For International UK designations, taking into account feedback from customers.

Trade Marks Journal - 'International Registrations filed under the Madrid Protocol' will be listed as 'International Registrations designating the UK’.(The International journal will continue to be produced separately until Phase 2 changes are implemented)

Phase 2 enhancements to Trade Mark Services

New Style Journal - International UK designations and UK applications will be integrated and published in one Journal. The Journal numbering will change (to reflect week and year).

'Ecaveats' Changes to 'eAlerts' - eAlerts has enhanced features allowing customers to monitor the progress or status of a trade mark by requesting alerts for specific events all FREE of charge. This service is also available for International Registrations designating the UK.

Trade Mark e-Renewal - A new ‘e’ trade mark service for fast, efficient online renewal and payment, using form, eTM11. The service provides timely email receipt acknowledgements, with the Certificate of Renewal emailed as a PDF attachment once payment has cleared.

Trade Mark e-Application - Changes include:

  • More user friendly language and better examples to aid customer completion.
  • A goods and services classification search tool located within the application process. Pre-approved terms used in this classification tool are acceptable at the UK and at OHIM and we are currently working to get agreement from WIPO.
  • A new data ‘field’ to capture company numbers for UK companies, this is in response to user requests to identify companies engaged in name swops. Provision of this data is optional, but encouraged.
  • Enhanced name and address capture functions using email to retrieve existing details or a postcode look-up facility. We will be discussing with regular users options for capturing e-mail details ahead of implementation.
  • Capture of ‘type’ of representative is to be sought to enable the IPO to better understand and deliver services for its customer base.
  • Sending of an automatic email once payment has been cleared, with a filing receipt attached which includes a certificate of filing (for use in international priority claims).

e-Response Forms - New electronic response forms accessible for providing timely responses to communications from us. These are accessible via links within letters we issue.

Trade Mark e-Case Enquiry - Enhancements to the information available including:

  • Fuller details on the stages of cases, especially in tribunal proceedings i.e. status of oppositions, details of opponent.
  • Company numbers will be output to enable customers to identify companies engaged in name swops.
  • Registered trade mark licences to be accessible as part of the trade mark case record.

Additional Service Changes Include:

  • Paper Forms - New layout of forms following a review and feedback from customers, including the profession. Forms to be in fillable PDF format. which can be either, printed blank, or completed printed and sent by post to the IPO.

Other Changes

  • Improved service availability. We will no longer need to take the service down for overnight updating.
  • Use of same search tool by internal and external search functions.

Questions & Answers

How long will separate journals for International Registrations (IRs) and UK cases continue to be produced?

Between phase 1 and phase 2, two weekly journals will be produced, so International UK and UK will be separate for that period only.

Will all the information currently published still be available in the new integrated Journal?

No, details of licences, assignments and name changes will no longer be published in the Journal after the phase 2 changes: this information will be available via the Internet Case Enquiry.

How long will the Journal be available online?

Following publication, the online Journal will be accessible for 3 months rather than 1 year.

Do I have to sign-up for eAlerts if I am already registered for Ecaveats?

No existing customers of Ecaveats will automatically have their registration details transferred to eAlerts. However you will receive alerts for all events unless you sign in and deselect the ones you don’t want.

Can the fillable PDF forms be emailed to the IPO when complete?

No, forms will still need to be printed and posted to the IPO as current.