International IP Searches
International IP search databases
It should be noted that a search carried out in any database cannot replace a professional search. The information furnished by a non-professional search will only be indicative of published patents, trade marks or designs but is not exhaustive and the search/service cannot be considered as a complete and only source of patent/trade mark/design information.
Users are advised that, business decisions should not be made on the basis of these searches alone. It is advisable to have a professional search done (using a registered patent or trade mark attorney) before taking important business decisions.
To further promote the free availability of patent information, the European Patent Office (EPO), the member states of the European Patent Organisation and the European Commission combined to launch the espacenet service in 1998.
Esp@cenet is designed primarily for the general public and its main aim is to provide non-specialist users with a readily accessible source of free patent information published by patent offices around the world, in some cases dating back to 1920. Specifically, esp@cenet offers access to:
- Published patent applications of the EPO member states (including Ireland).
- EPO published patent applications.
- Published PCT (Patent Co-operation Treaty) applications from the World Intellectual Property Organisation(WIPO).
- "Worldwide" patent information (English language patent abstracts).
- Japanese patent documents.
The PATENTSCOPE database provides access to international Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) applications in full text format on the day of publication, as well as to patent documents of participating national and regional patent offices.The information may be searched by entering keywords, names of applicants, international patent classification and many other search criteria in multiple languages.
EPO Federated Register
The Federated Register offers free access to basic post-grant legal status information on EP patents via a single point of access which will take you directly to the online national patent registers of the participating EPO member states.
The European Patent Register
The European Patent Register, contains procedural and legal status data on patent applications handled by the European Patent Office.
Trade Mark databases
Before applying for a new trade mark, it is essential to make sure by carrying out a search of trade mark databases, that it is not similar or identical to any trade mark already existing (registered or undergoing the filing process) for the desired classes of goods or services. Once a trade mark is registered, it is also important to regularly consult trade mark databases in order to check if similar or identical trademarks are registered and avoid your trade mark infringing others.
TMview - Trade marks in the European Union and beyond
TMview is an online consultation tool developed by the EUIPO which allows free of charge trade mark searches. It includes all types of trade marks present in the official databases of the participating EU Trade Mark Offices, the OHIM and WIPO. The tool is updated daily by the respective national trade mark offices and it is available in 22 languages.
You can use TMview to:
- Check the availability of your idea for a trade mark across Europe.
- Check market tendencies.
- Find out the goods and services protected by your competitors’ trade marks
- Receive updates on selected trade marks for: Change of status, change of name and end of opposition period.
TMview is available at www.tmview.europa.eu/tmview/welcome.html
The eSearch plus application provides you with comprehensive information about trade marks, designs, owners, representatives and bulletins. It enables you to perform quick and efficient searches within EUIPO's databases.
eSearch plus is available at: https://euipo.europa.eu/ohimportal/en/esearch
More information about searching European Union trade marks and International trade mark searches can be obtained by viewing a useful fact sheet prepared by the IPR HELPDESK:
International trademarks can be searched in TMview, when selecting the “World – WIPO” office in the advanced search interface.
They can also be searched in the two following databases: ROMARIN and Global Brand Database, available at the WIPO’s website.
Use the ROMARIN database to search detailed information on all international marks recorded under WIPO's Madrid System. ROMARIN is available at http://www.wipo.int/romarin.
To conduct a pre-filing search or browse existing trademarks in your target markets, use the Global Brand Database. WIPO’s Global Brand Database is available at: http://www.wipo.int/branddb/en/index.jsp#.
Design searching is a way to:
- check whether a design is new and original
- carry out market monitoring on the last trend tendencies.
- look at the market perspectives in a specific commercial area
- discover whether a prior design forms an obstacle to the protection of a subsequent design
- develop a design protection strategy.
DesignView - Designs in the European Union and beyond
Designview is an online consultation tool developed by the EUIPO which allows free of charge design searches. It is a multilingual and easy-to-use tool, and gives access to design applications and registrations provided by the participating offices through a single and unique platform. Each office owns the content it makes available and is responsible for its daily update. You can use Designview to:
- Check and visualize existing designs across Europe.
- Check market tendencies
- Help users to check the novelty of a design.
WIPO International Designs Register – The Hague Express database
The Hague Express Database updated weekly, includes bibliographical data and, as far as international registrations governed exclusively or partly by the 1999 and/or by the 1960 Act(s) of the Hague Agreement are concerned, reproductions of industrial designs relating to international registrations that have been recorded in the International Register and published in the International Designs Bulletin as of issue No. 1/1999.
The Global Design Database (WIPO)
The Global Design Database is a world-wide data collection of industrial designs registered under the WIPO-administered Hague System and/or in participating national collections. This database enables free access to design data by multiple criterion searching. Users can choose searching designs by type of product, identification of the owner (creator) of the design, application and/or registration number and date, countries, where protection is sought/granted.
More information about searching designs can be obtained by a useful fact sheet prepared by the IPR HELPDESK: IPR Helpdesk