- Patent & Trade marks Attorneys - Intellectual Property Home | Manchester, UK.

Intellectual Property

Intellectual Property (I.P.) is a term used to describe exclusive rights granted to creators and owners of works that are a result of human intellectual creativity. IP rights can take various forms such as a brand or an invention more

The Mancunium Way

We are passionate about helping our clients thrive in their businesses. We believe that in order to provide a great level of service to our clients, and adequately protect their IP (be it an invention, a brand or a design) it is vital that we fully understand their trade.

Bespoke Services

Our services are designed with a broad spectrum of clients in mind from small businesses to larger ones. We have broad commercial experience in industries ranging from biotech and energy to sports and consumer goods. more

Quality Assurance

Mancunium IP is a brand owned by Franks & Co (Mancunium) Ltd, part of the Franks & Co Group of European Patent & Trade Mark Attorneys. In continuing with the ethos laid down at Mancunium's founding in 2008, the work we do is of the highest standard. more

Licensing Support

Maybe you already have an IP right and are looking at licensing as a potential option for realising the benefit of your right. We offer a licensing service designed to find the right licensee for your patent, trade mark, design or confidential information. more

Infringement & Counterfeiting

Clients often consult Mancunium IP before entering a new market or beginning to import / export a new product, so as to avoid infringing other companies' IP. Similarly, we may be able to help you if you have been accused of infringing an IP right. more

Meet our Attorneys

Dr. Robert B. Franks, European Patent Attorney, Chartered Patent and Trade Mark Attorney

Dr. Robert B. Franks

Chartered Patent & Trade Mark Attorney and European Patent Attorney
Dr. Abdulmalik Lawal, European Patent Attorney, Chartered Patent and Trade Mark Attorney

Dr. Abdulmalik Lawal

Chartered Patent & Trade Mark Attorney and European Patent Attorney
Kate Hilton-Balfe, Patent and Trade Mark Representative

Kate Hilton-Balfe

Patent and Trade Mark Representative

Common Questions

If you have a brand or logo that customers identify with you, are about to launch a new branded product or service, or have composed a new instrumental for a soundtrack, or have written a song, comedy sketch, etc, then it is important to protect such Intellectual Property sufficiently, because doing so could prevent someone else using them for financial gain without your permission, and 'free riding' on your hard work and hard earned goodwill that may be attached to such IP. And in the case where someone infringes your IP, if it is sufficiently protected, it could most likely give your case much weight in a Court of Law during an infringement case, than if it wasn't. In addition it is also important to have your brand name, logo, screened (and searched) before publication or use so as to ensure that you are not unknowingly using someone else's trade mark (and thereby infringing their IP) or if its an invention idea you are trying to obtain a patent for, then to ensure that no one else has already patented it , or that it is not already in the public domain. Furthermore, once registered, most IP rights, be they patents and or trade marks are valuable assets that could increase the value of your business though acts such as licensing. It is also important to note that protecting and enforcing IP, are two distinctly different activities. Once your IP is properly protected, it is often required of the owner of the IP to ensure that the IP is adequately enforced from the outset, and sometimes this is important in preventing loss of rights. On a slightly different note, it is also important for other IP such as copyrights (be it a literary work or composition) that appropriate measures are put in place before disclosing such work. Minimally, a good contract should be negotiated with the record company(or your agent), and before signing such a contract, the artist(s) should ensure that an experienced Patent Attorney has carefully reviewed such documents and presented all the pro's, and cons (including any possible undesirable effects that could later arise).
The first thing to do it to contact a Patent or Trade Marks Attorney as soon as possible. They will ascertain whether or not the goods that are being imported do actually infringe your IP, and will offer appropriate advice on what options are available to you. With HMRC rules stipulating that HMRC will only detain goods pending the outcome of court proceedings instituted by rights holders within a period of several days from notification by HMRC, and will only formally seize goods if directed to do so by the UK courts, it is crucial that you act quickly and receive the right advice as soon as you are aware of any possible infringement, as it could affect the course of proceedings later.
In the UK & Europe, the invention must be new, it must involve an "inventive step", it must have some industrial application (Industry may also include use in agriculture), and it must not encompass subject matter that is excluded from patentability(e.g. for example discoveries, scientific theories schemes & rules and methods for performing mental acts). In other countries, there are slight differences in undertaking this ascertainment, although most have novelty, inventive step and industrial application. There are also other subject matter that may be "patentable" in other countries, which are excluded in the UK & Europe (eg. business methods and programs for computers as such)
The first thing to do is to request trade mark search for the jurisdiction in which you propose to your your mark. The search will flag up whether the proposed word, mark, or logo is already in use by someone else. This saves from having to invest in a trade mark application when your proposed mark is already in use or owned by someone else. We regularly conduct both patent and trade mark searches covering various jurisdictions for our clients. You can find more information about patent or trade mark searches in the patents and trade marks section of our website.
Before you incorporate or register your business with Companies House, you’ll need to check whether the proposed company names are already in use by someone else. Name conflicts can have serious repercussions down the line, and you may be forced to rebrand (an often expensive exercise), if it later transpires that another trader already owns rights in the word mark you were thinking of using. Thus it is highly advisable to request a trade mark search from an experienced Trade marks Attorney, to check if your business name is available to use. They will advise you what to watch out for. It’s also worth noting that you can still infringe on someone else’s trade mark even if they have not registered it with the UK IPO or the EU Trade marks office. Thus, a good Trade Marks Attorney will help you conduct comprehensive trade mark searches encompassing your most important markets, and will advise you of everything you need to know.
For some businesses Licensing is an economic market entry strategy and also a means by which to recoup the investment in an invention or product. It can also be a way to expand a business. Mancunium IP can advise you on software licensing agreements (acquisition or disposal including open-source licensing), Media licensing, production agreements, website content agreements, the licensing of brands, investment licensing, technology licenses, product manufacturing agreements and joint-venture agreements.
The first thing to do is to speak to your Patent / Trade marks Attorneys or Solicitor as a matter of urgency, who will advise you of the steps that you need to take. They will know how to handle the issue to verify the facts of the alleged infringement and to try and mitigate damage. When preparing to meet them, ensure you have taken any documentation, court orders or letters that have been sent to you. Also, take along pictures (or preferably samples if available) of the goods/articles in question. If you are aware of or suspect that the allegation may be true, do not escalate the activity for which the alleged infringement concerns. Further, Do not attempt to engage or discuss the allegation with the party bringing the action without first obtaining advice from a Patent or Trade marks Attorney or Solicitor with experience in litigation. We work with a network of Solicitors & Barristers to safeguard and protect our clients interests in matters where a client is facing an infringement action or is involved in litigation.


Patent Applications

To apply for a Patent, a Patent application must be filed. This involves drafting a Patent Specification embodying the novel features of your invention. more

Trade Mark Applications

To protect a Trade Mark, it is often required to have the mark registered in the jurisdiction you wish it protected. This involves making an application to a Trade Mark or IP office. more

Design Registration

Design registration gives the proprietor of the design the right to stop others from creating designs which are very similar to the proprietors design within the same Jurisdiction. more

Disputes & Infringement

Where there are allegations of IP infringement be it Patent, Trade Mark or a Registered Design, there are a number of ways in which we can assist you obtain a favourable outcome. more

Trade Mark Oppositions

We can assist you if you would like to oppose a competitor's published trade mark application, or if your mark has been opposed. Further, we can help with trade mark invalidation. more


We can assist you in matters of licensing your designs, brand or technology locally or internationally helping you exploit your IP rights much more effectively, and saving you time. more

Confidential Information

Confidential information can be an important and valuable part of a company’s intellectual property. It is therefore a good idea to ensure that such information is adequately protected. more


It is important to protect your intellectual property from the very start of a new venture because such not only secures your business in terms of attracting investment. more


Our people are an important resource and a driving force behind our business. They have experience in providing consulting services relating to various disciplines and sectors. more