Insights Intellectual Property Office consults on proposals for legal changes needed to deliver its “One IPO” transformation programme


The IPO is seeking views on how the IP legal framework can better support the One IPO transformation programme.

The One IPO Transformation programme is designed to modernise and improve the IPO’s services. By 2025, the IPO will have replaced its existing processes with a single, integrated system for all registered IP rights. This will provide customers with more efficient digital services that transform the way they interact with the IPO.

As well as building these new services, the IPO needs to make sure that it has a legal framework that can support them. The current framework assumes a system built around paper forms and correspondence. The IPO wants the law to have the flexibility to adapt to new technologies, and to be more consistent in how things work across rights.

The IPO says that the proposed changes set out in the consultation will update the law and remove legal barriers, allowing the IPO to be more innovative and deliver world-class digital services. They will also address current inconsistencies between different IP rights.

There are two parts to the consultation and respondents can respond to either or both:

  • Part A focuses on proposed changes to the law to enable digital transformation of the IPO’s services; the IPO is seeking evidence and views on a range of options on how legislation could be altered to better support innovation; and
  • Part B focuses on proposed changes to improve the IPO’s tribunal function and align processes that should work in a similar way across rights.

The IPO is seeking a range of evidence and views from businesses, representative organisations, and legal practitioners on proposals covering a wide range of areas, including:

  • standardising some legislative requirements across IP rights;
  • the use of artificial intelligence and automation;
  • greater flexibility on fees;
  • improvements to the tribunals function; and
  • the types of media that can be used in patent applications.

The One IPO service will start being rolled out to the first patents customers in November 2023. Trade marks and designs will be added in 2025.

Early details and demonstrations of the One IPO service have already been shared with customers for parts of the new service, including the new IPO customer accounts and the new patents application service. However, changes in legislation, not just technology, are needed to allow the IPO to deliver the best services and remain fit for the future. To read the IPO’s press release in full and for a link to the consultation, click here.