Anti-counterfeiting and customs measures

Protection available

Your brand can be protected by the civil or the criminal law. Trading Standards in the UK will enforce your IP rights through the criminal courts against counterfeiters.  Customs will provide protection from illegal importations by counterfeiters from outside the UK and outside the EU.  You also have the right to bring civil proceedings through the courts against the counterfeiters.  

Rights protected

Trade marks, copyright, design rights, patents and all other intellectual property rights can be protected through the civil courts in the UK and EU and as a result of action taken by Trading Standards and Customs.

What we do

  • Trading Standards – UK Trading Standards will take criminal action against counterfeiters. However usually this is only where they receive good co-operation from intellectual property rights holders. We act for a number of brands and are in regular contact with most Trading Standards offices throughout the UK. We assist Trading Standards by providing a liaison between our clients and Trading Standards to identify counterfeit goods. We draft formal witness statements to support the prosecutions. As Trading Standards undertake most of the work themselves in detecting, investigating and prosecuting counterfeiters our clients legal costs can be kept to a minimum whilst also being provided with an effective remedy.
  • Customs – we can register notice of our clients’ intellectual property rights with the UK Customs. They will then send notice to all UK Border Agencies to monitor any suspect counterfeit goods of our clients coming into the UK. If a Community Trade Mark is in place this can be extended to all 28 EU member states and all Border Agency officials throughout the EU to monitor any suspected counterfeit importations entering the EU. Following goods being picked up by the Border Agencies we write to the importer under EU legislation to demand that the importer abandons the goods. Under the EU regulation a ‘simplified procedure’ is adopted so that in the vast majority of cases court proceedings are not required and goods can be simply seized and destroyed at minimum legal costs to our clients.
  • UK civil courts – we can take all forms of civil action through the UK courts to protect all of the intellectual property rights of our clients. 

Additional information