A Closer Look at the IP Act 2014

July 2014

The Intellectual Property Act received Royal Assent on 14 May 2014.

Following on from our previous posts here and here, our HGF Law Partners Martyn Fish and Antony Gold have been studying the changes. 

Commenting on the provisions impacting on designs, Antony said;

“The Act has done some helpful tidying up in removing a number of anomalies between UK and European design legislation and between copyright and design right.  But many  of those changes are at a relatively technical level and are unlikely to produce the major impact which has been forecast.   Recent court decisions such as  Karen Millen v Dunnes are likely to be of greater significance for industry. 

With a number of interlocking rights, design law is still complex  and not fully understood by many of those who could benefit most from it.  A more fundamental simplification at some point would be welcome."

Turning to the provisions  relating to patents, Martyn added;

“What is significant about the Act is that it brings the UK one step closer to implementing the Unified Patent Court, which (if introduced) will have a significant impact on all owners of European patents (see our pages on the Unitary Patent).  If the Unified Patent Court is created, rather than simplifying the IP framework, it will introduce further complexity and potentially cost to the patent system in Europe”.

We will discuss the IP Act 2014 further as it is implemented.