HomeInsightsNew European Union Intellectual Property Office Examination Guidelines enter into force.

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The latest edition of the EUIPO Guidelines for Examination of European Union trade marks (EUTM) and registered Community designs (RCD) entered into force on 1 March 2021, following approval by the Executive Director of the EUIPO on 8 February 2021 by means of Decision EX-21-1.

The Guidelines are available in both electronic and PDF format on the EUIPO website. The changes introduced in the new edition can be seen and compared to the previous edition by switching on the “Show modifications” option at the top of the electronic version of the Guidelines.

The latest edition was timed to coincide with the entry into force of the most recent Decisions of the Executive Director of the EUIPO: EX-20-9 on communication by electronic means and EX-20-10 on technical specifications for annexes submitted on data carriers. Both Decisions and the Guidelines came into force on 1 March 2021.

Decision EX-20-9 abolishes fax as a means of communication with EUIPO on all EU Trade Mark and Registered Community Design matters, both for the parties and for the Office. Parties must now communicate using eComm via the UserArea, but there are two alternative back-up solutions, one in the UserArea and the second in the form of a file-sharing solution.

Decision EX-20-10 removes DVDs and CDs as acceptable types of carriers. Only USB flash drives, pen drives or similar memory units are now accepted. The Decision also reduces the acceptable size of individual annexes (files) to 20MB and explains that the content of a data carrier will become part of the electronic file of the IP right, and as such, the original data carrier may be disposed of five years after its receipt.

To access the new Guidelines, click here.