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Beware of fraudsters claiming to be from the Intellectual Property Office

8th December 2015

The UK’s Intellectual Property Office (IPO) is warning businesses and members of the public to beware of approaches from a Latvian based company which has set itself up using the same name in order to defraud unsuspecting victims. 

The IPO is the official UK government body responsible for intellectual property rights including patents, designs, trade marks and copyright. 

The Latvian company has been inviting businesses and members of the public to pay renewal fees for patents and trademarks. They have been using documentation designed to look like official renewal reminders for registered patents and trademarks sent by the genuine IPO.

This company is not part of, or associated with the UK’s IPO. The City of London Police is currently investigating this matter and has said that no-one has been arrested.

In addition to this you should also be aware that several other companies solicit business as renewal agents using trading names and methods which resemble those used by the IPO. They usually charge fees much higher than the official renewal fees.

How to renew my trade mark/patent?

The IPO issues official renewal reminders when your patent and trade mark is due for renewal. When you wish to renew your trade mark or patent, the best ways to do this are:

  • By using the online trade mark or patent renewal functions on the .GOV.uk website.
  • Use a reputable renewal agent, such as Computer Patent Annuities Ltd or contact a registered trade mark or patent attorney.

We are urging the public not to pay any money to this private company which has no connection to the Government’s IPO.  Where approaches are made by companies offering patent and trademark renewal for a fee, verification should be sought from the Intellectual Property Office by contacting them here.

To report a fraud and receive a police crime reference number, call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or use our online fraud reporting tool.

You can now also sign up for free to Action Fraud Alert to receive direct, verified, accurate information about scams and fraud in your area by email, recorded voice and text message.