Common practices of the EUIPO and the member states

Common practices for enhanced transparency, consistency, certainty and predictability

The European Union Intellectual Property Network (EUIPN) is a network consisting of the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and the national offices in the EU. The EUIPN has created a number of common practices designed to ensure that applications for trade mark and design registration, as well as processing, are consistent across National and Regional IP Offices of the member states and that trade marks can be used after the registration. Common practices are published in Common Communications.

Common Communications have no legally binding effect on the offices of the member states. Instead, they serve as compilations to inform about the understanding reached among the IPOs. Common Communications are compiled on the basis of opinions expressed by the offices. The principles in Common Communications are generally applied. The purpose of Common Communications is to cover the majority of situations. However, the national offices consider each application separately, and the principles in Common Communications are used as guidelines.

The PRH has participated in the preparation of the following Common Communications and has approved them.

Harmonisation of product indications for designs and a common indication database (CP7)

In the project, product indications for designs were harmonised and DesignClass was created. DesignClass is an indication database for designs and it is maintained by the EUIPO together with national authorities. The PRH participates in the voting concerning DesignClass indications and the maintenance and development of the database.

DesignClass helps users to search and translate product indications for a design application as well as to find the right class for the design.

Go to the DesignClass database.

Common Communication on criteria for assessing disclosure of designs on the internet (CP10)

The Common Communication concerns the set of criteria on the assessment of disclosure of designs on the internet and the respective recommendations.

Due to the growth of e-commerce and the rise in trade operations conducted over the internet, the disclosure of designs is increasingly made via the internet, giving rise to questions of how to prove online disclosures.

The Common Communication covers aspects from types of evidence acceptable for presenting the information obtained on the internet to specific recommendations related to the presentation of evidence obtained from social media, online media, applications or other online sources. It also takes into account the existing exceptions to the availability of a design on the internet.

This common practice entered into force in Finland on 1 July 2020.

Read the Common Communication on criteria for assessing disclosure of designs on the internet on the EUIPO website.

The EUIPO has also published the following Common Communications not approved by the PRH. Nevertheless, the PRH strives to follow the principles presented in these communications whenever possible.

Common Communication on convergence on graphic representations of designs (CP6)

The requirements set out in the Common Communication cover the use of visual disclaimers, the use of different types of views and how to reproduce a design on a neutral background. Furthermore, the Common Communication also provides recommendations to enhance the applicants’ understanding of how best to reproduce their designs and an overview of the Offices’ quality standards for design applications received by electronic means and by paper.

Read the Common Communication on convergence on graphic representations of designs on the EUIPO website.

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Latest update 09.09.2020