UK Patent & Design Applications




Validating European patents in THE UK

Worldwide Filing & Prosecution

The FAI European Patent Attorney & UK IP Consulting Firm with UKIPO and EPO representation provides UK, EP-based and global IP strategy and management including invention harvesting, searching, IP landscape analysis, drafting, filing and prosecution of IP, patent valuation, and worldwide patent management (renewals, register changes etc.).

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Our team can help you protect your intellectual property in USA, Europe and all over the world. The team includes registered IP prosecutors registered to practice patent and design law before the USPTO, UKIPO, EPO, EUIPO and WIPO and formally accepted to represent before the Unified Patent Court for the EU. We are ideally placed to handle your patent and design filing and prosecution in any country.

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UK Patents & Designs

International Applications via UK

European / Unitary Patents & Validations

Worldwide Patents & Designs

we protect great ideas

Our clients operate in various industrial sectors (financial, retail, health care and biotech, education, manufacturing, semiconductors, transport, communications, construction, energy, mining, agriculture) and in a range of technological arts including optics, electronics, physics, biotech, software, mechanical, chemical, nuclear. In addition to established technologies in these sectors, we cover cutting edge technologies in the high tech sector, semiconductor manufacturing, and medical and pharmaceutical chemistry industries.

From AI to Agritech…

…from Pharmaceutics to Publications

our services

Patentability & Novelty searches
Landscape Search & Analysis
Invention Harvesting
Design searches
Worldwide Patent Filing & Prosecution
Drafting, Filing & Prosecuting UK Patent applications
Drafting, Filing & Prosecuting UK Design Applications
Validating European patents in the UK
UK Patent & Design Appeals
UK infringement & Validity Opinions
UK Revocation Actions
UK Infringement Actions
Worldwide Patent & Design Filing & Prosecution
IP management & Renewals


A UK Patent is granted by the UK Intellectual Property Office for an invention. A patent owner has the exclusive right to use the invention and can take action against those using the invention in the UK without permission of the patent owner. Anyone using the patent invention in UK without consent of the patentee will generally be infringing the patent.

What can be patented?

A UK patent protects the way that a product , machine or process works. It does not protect the way an article looks (see UK Registered Design for protecting the way an article looks).

The invention must be

  • capable of being made or used in industry
  • new, and
  • involve an inventive step

In order for an invention to potentially involve an inventive step it must differ sufficiently from what is already known.

A UK registered design can be used to protect the way your article/product looks. It is a right to prevent others from using the registered design. This is an absolute right in that it applies even if the design has been independently created by others rather than copied. This is in contrast to UK unregistered design which can subsist automatically without registration but which is limited to preventing use of designs that have been copied.

What can be protected?

Appearance of whole or part of a product (inside and out). This may result from lines, contours, colours, shape, texture, material and/or ornamentation of your product. Computer icons, typefaces and other graphical symbols are also protectable.

The design must be

  • novel (differ from prior designs by more than immaterial details); and
  • poses individual character (produce different overall impression on informed user (eg. and user)

Protection limitations

  • component parts/spare parts of complex products only registrable if remain visible during normal use of the complex product
  • use of component part to repair complex product to restore to original appearance cannot be stopped
  • cannot protect features which are soley dictated by the product’s technical function or required to permit product to connect to or with another product so either product can perform its function
  • cannot register designs which incorporate protected emblems or third parties trademarks of copyright material

A UK patent covers Northern Ireland and the countries of Great Britain (England, Wales and Scotland) and extends to the Isle of Man. It is also possible to extend a UK patent to other jurisdictions such as Jersey, Bermuda, Gibraltar, etc. Please contact us to learn more about the required formalities. Note that a UK Patent or Registered Design does not cover the European Union (EU).

Upto 25 years. Must be renewed at five year intervals.

  1. Enforcement value aside, there is significant defensive value in the patents since they can stop a competitor patenting your technology later.
  2. Patents may help deter competitors from enforcing their patents against you.
  3. “Patent pending” and patented technology may deter some competitor startups from pursuing the technology themselves.
  4. Patents may help startups raise capital.
  5. As an intangible asset on the balance sheet, they can increase company valuations.


If you disclosed your invention to the public before first filing a priority patent application covering the invention, it is not possible to obtain UK patent protection. In some other countries, it may still be possible. We can help you maximize protection if you have already disclosed your invention – contact us as soon as possible.

A design that has been disclosed to the public by the designer or in consequence of a disclosure made by the designer will not prevent obtaining a registered design provided the application for the registered design is filed within 12 months of the first design disclosure.

Note that, where at all possible, an application for a registered design should be filed before disclosing your design. Disclosing your design to the public can jeopardize design protection elsewhere in other countries. Furthermore, disclosures made independently of the designer will be considered for purpose of assessing novelty and individual character. It is best to file as soon as possible in case someone else files a similar design first.

There are some situations when it is still possible to file later. Contact us to determine if filing is still possible and the implications of doing this.

Refiling of a patent application is only possible in some circumstances. Contact us to determine if you are eligible to refile and the implications of doing this.

How can we help?

+44 (0)74 5814 9023

At FAI, we recognize that each client has different business and IP needs
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