The consultation process

On 4 December 2023, the Government of Jersey announced a consultation process entitled Intellectual Property: Proposal for a Primary Trade Mark Registry. This consultation process considers the modernisation of Jersey’s trade mark registration and protection system. As one of the leading IP law firms in Jersey, Spoor & Fisher Jersey participated in the process.

The consultation process sought feedback on a number of issues, and these issues are set out below, together with a summary of the responses (see italics):

The issues

The first one is the major one:

The possible creation of a system of primary registration and grant of trade marks in Jersey.

A system of primary registration refers to one where registration is not dependent on another trade mark registration, such as an EU or International trade mark registration.

The proposal of a system of primary registration for Jersey received universal approval, and it was seen as a positive step to promoting Jersey as an international business and finance centre. There were, however, suggestions that the Jersey IP Office (JIPO) would need additional capacity and competency to operate a primary trade mark registry.

The possible long-term economic opportunities linked to a primary trade mark registration system.

The feedback on this issue was mixed.

Whether joining the Madrid Protocol would deliver benefits to trade mark owners and the Jersey economy.

There was considerable agreement that joining the Madrid Protocol would be beneficial for Jersey.

The proposal that Jersey should no longer give automatic effect to International Trade Marks.

There was complete agreement on this issue.

The proposal that fees charged by JIPO under a primary registration system should be in line with Guernsey and the UK.

There was universal agreement that fees should be broadly in line.

The proposed transitional provisions for trade marks re-registered under the existing TMJL regime and International Trade Marks UK.

There was universal agreement that business continuity and continued trade mark protection are necessary for a smooth transition to a new type of IP registry.

In summary

The consultation process makes it clear that, on changing to a system of primary trade mark registration in Jersey, there will be no justification for giving any form of automatic protection in Jersey to EUTMs. In fact, in the Response Paper, the Jersey Government clarified the current position with regard to whether an EU registration automatically gives protection in Jersey. It was confirmed that as of 12 April 2009, an EU trade mark registration no longer affords any protection on the island. For more information on this topic and how to obtain trade mark protection in Jersey see:

It has further been made clear that, although the Government is proposing to modernise and further develop Jersey’s IP infrastructure in the area of trade marks, changes of a similar nature are not yet being proposed with regard to the registration of patents and designs.

Although the Government of Jersey is now considering what changes will be made and is preparing to draft the legislative amendments, it has stated that it intends to introduce a primary registration system much like neighbouring Guernsey, and also look to accede to the Madrid Protocol.

Spoor & Fisher Jersey intends to continue to take part in the stakeholder engagement process, but if you have any queries in the meantime, please contact us.