Musicians: Intellectual Property

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy written question – answered on 19th June 2019.

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Photo of Kevin Brennan Kevin Brennan Shadow Minister (Digital, Culture, Media and Sport) (Arts and Heritage)

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent representations he has received on protecting musical groups from having their names registered by third parties for intellectual property purposes without permission.

Photo of Chris Skidmore Chris Skidmore Vice-Chair, Conservative Party, Minister of State (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Universities and Science) (Joint with the Department for Education)

My rt. hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has responsibility for intellectual property and regularly receives a wide range of representations about rights across the intellectual property spectrum.

In the case of a trade mark application for a band name, the application would be examined in accordance with the Trade Mark Act 1994 and the Trade Mark Rules 2008. Any trade mark applications including the name of a famous individual or group would be considered in line with Section 3(6) of the Trade Marks Act 1994, which states that a trade mark shall not be registered if or to the extent that the application is made in bad faith. Anyone can oppose the registration of a trade mark once it has been published after examination through the Intellectual Property Office’s low-cost tribunal service. The government also provides a specialised Intellectual Property Enterprise Court to provide access to justice at an affordable cost for SMEs and entrepreneurs. This court has streamlined procedures, a limit on legal costs and a cap on damages. It also includes a specific small claims track for disputes up to the value of £10,000.

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