Shelston IP has become aware of a recent increase in the
number of unscrupulous companies offering unsolicited IP services.
We urge our clients to treat any unexpected correspondence about
their intellectual property with caution.
Such correspondence typically appears in the form of a
professional looking "invoice", with a request for
payment regarding the "publication" or
"renewal" of your patent, trade mark or design (often for
countries outside Australia). "Publication" usually
involves the inclusion of your patent, trade mark or design in a
private journal (which may or may not exist).
These "publications" often have grandiose titles like
"European Trade Marks Directory" (or similar). We advise
that payment of this "invoice" does not confer any rights
in your company's patent, trade mark or design in any
You may also receive an unsolicited offer (often in the form of
an "invoice") which infers that payment is required to
attend to the renewal of your patent, trade mark or design in order
to maintain it (typically for significantly inflated sums).
This type of correspondence has historically been sent from
organisations based in Eastern Europe (particularly Hungary,
Romania and Czech Republic). However, they have also been sent from
companies on letterhead bearing an Australian address, such as a
Melbourne CBD address. They are widely posted and even IP Australia
has received several "invoices".
Our firm is also aware of recent examples purportedly from
Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Spain and the United States. This
correspondence typically looks "professional" and several
of these organisations have developed websites to support of their
deceptive practices. Consequently, we recommend that any request
received is checked carefully. If you are unsure about the
legitimacy of any correspondence you have received relating to your
intellectual property, please feel free to contact Shelston IP for
Shelston IP clients may receive correspondence from Computer
Patent Annuities (CPA Global) who have been engaged by our firm to
manage some IP renewal matters on our behalf. However, our clients
should not receive solicitations from any other overseas
Should you require assistance checking correspondence that you
have received, or assistance with any other IP matters, our firm
would be happy to assist you.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
Shelston IP ranked one of Australia's
leading Intellectual Property firms in 2015.
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The Ugg boots case revolves around who holds the trade mark rights to the word 'Ugg' in relation to sheepskin boots.
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