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One IPO Transformation programme - second consultation period

The UKIPO has launched a second consultation period as part of its One IPO Transformation programme on proposed changes to trade mark, design and patent operations at the UKIPO. The aim of the programme is offering better digital services to its customers, as well as to make current processes more effective and efficient.

The consultation is asking for opinions from the public on the following topics:

  • whether there is a need for an online public document inspection service for trade marks and designs - which would make it much easier for parties to review documents associated with applications and registrations, rather than having to inspect files in person or request a copy of the file from the UKIPO (this would not apply to all documents, for example, where they have been filed at the UKIPO subject to a confidentiality request or for data protection reasons);
  • rules governing requests for confidentiality;
  • proposals to change or abolish series trade marks applications, which allow parties to file up to six similar trade marks at a reduced cost. The same question was posed in a consultation back in 2009 and a small majority were in favour of retaining the ability to file a series application. They now represent around 10% of all trade mark applications filed and have a fairly high objection rate (around 39%) due to, in particular, unrepresented applicants having difficulty with the requirements;
  • length of supplementary protection certificate fee payment periods;
  • collection and publication of addresses for patent inventors; and
  • looking at ways to encourage more mediation during IPO tribunal proceedings.

The consultation period ends on 31 October 2023 at midnight and can be accessed via the UKIPO's website: 

"Based on the evidence we presently have, the government’s current preference is to cease offering series marks. This will address the current difficulties caused by improper use of the system. Many valid series applications are received and registered each year. However, the negligible benefit these appear to confer on rightsholders are outweighed by the potential gains to be achieved through simplifying the application processes."


brands designs copyright, trade mark and design