The IPKat almost forgot to mention that 'The Patents, Trade Marks and Designs (Address for Service) Rules 2009 (SI 2009/546)' have come into force on 6 April 2009. As a result applicants and any person commencing or opposing proceedings before the comptroller or registrar will be able to provide an address for service anywhere in the European Economic Area (EEA) or the Channel Islands.
Left: this address for service is based in the UK (picture taken from Mail Order Moggies)
On its website the UK IPO helpfully explains that
"... the changes will:
- Give individuals and businesses the choice of using patent and trade mark attorneys based anywhere in the EEA or the Channel Islands.
- Make it easier for individuals and businesses to use the same address for service when dealing with multiple national offices in Europe."
Before the introduction of new 'Address for Service rules', it has been necessary for a party involved in inter-partes proceedings to provide an address for service in the UK. The new rules remove this restriction; all parties will be able to use an address for service anywhere in the UK, as well as in any other country in the EEA or the Channel Islands.
To read the 'The Patents, Trade Marks and Designs (Address for Service) Rules 2009', please click here. The explanatory memorandom can be found here.
Merpel likes the idea of 'freedom to provide cross-border services' but wonders what the long term implications of the new rules could be.... Tufty is slightly bemused by these news and wonders whether any other European or EEA jurisdiction have introduced similar rules. Do our readers know?