Once you have a presence on the market, you are vulnerable. Your product, service, or trade mark can become the object of litigation at any time independent of whether you’ve protected your intellectual property or not!
A competitor can send you warning (a cease and desist letter) if you are infringing their rights with your product, product name or design. IP rights can also be contested in court at any time because they are not guaranteed by the IPI. In such a case, the court decides on the validity of the IP right.
Take warning notices from a competitor and the related deadlines seriously. Request an extract from the register from the claimant: it will help you to gauge potential infringement better. In general, you should always consult an attorney in such cases. They can assess the legal status and recommend an effective strategy for responding. Grounds for litigation can often be voided, for example if the opposing party’s IP right isn’t valid.
Good to know
- Searches are the best prevention against rights infringement. Read the section Don’t infringe.
Harmonisation and partial revision of guidelines as of 1 July 2023
Conference on Intellectual Property & Sustainability at the University of Geneva
Symposium: "Best practices in the fight against counterfeiting & piracy – NFTs not your cup of tea? Well, they should: NFTs as a new way of fighting counterfeiting and piracy"