Post Brexit: exhaustion of rights
D Young & Co is fully prepared for Brexit and it will be very much business as usual whatever date the UK leaves the EU. We have offices in the UK and Germany and this will allow us to continue operating on your behalf on UK, German and EU intellectual property rights both pre and post Brexit. In addition, the UK Government has been preparing for exit day and has issued legislation and technical notices to assist businesses in preparation for departure. These should come into force on the day the UK leaves the EU, whatever date that might be.
Currently, IP rights are considered “exhausted” once goods have been placed on the market by the IP owner or with the owner’s consent anywhere within the European Economic Area (EEA), namely the member states of the European Union plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.
In a no-deal scenario, the UK will unilaterally continue to recognise EEA regional exhaustion from exit day. Accordingly, IP rights in relation to goods which are being imported into the UK from an EEA country will continue to be considered as exhausted, at least for a temporary period. The UK Government is also considering options for what exhaustion regime should apply after the end of such temporary period. However, the position relating to exports from the UK may well be different, if the UK and EU fail to reach agreement. Therefore, there could be restrictions from exit day on the parallel import of goods from the UK into the EEA.