BEWARE OF MISLEADING INVOICES

BEWARE OF MISLEADING INVOICES

Feb 27

We found an increase in reports from our customers and users of unusual mail from companies requesting payment for trademark and design services such as registration, deposit, renewal, extension, but they do NOT provide any of these services and also you definitely risk to loose:

 

1. The money you pay to them.

2. Your trademark rights.

 

We strongly remember you that these companies are NOT connected with any official trade mark or design registration service provided by public bodies.

 

In some cases we are able to inform in time customers and users who contact us before they proceed with the payment, for others unfortunately it is too late because they have already proceeded with it.

 

Last November 2015 after our pro-bono complaint we undertaken on behalf of an Italian company,  the fake renewal service RMI – Rinnovo Marchi Italiani Srl was found guilty for misleading advertising by the Italian Competition Authority (Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato – AGCM), and has been sentenced to pay a fine of 20,000 Euros. (AGC Bullettin of January 9, 2017)

 

We wish to point out, however, the penalty imposed by AGCM is an administrative one and it does NOT allow the refund of the amount paid by the trademark owner. The only way to get the refund is taking a legal action in Court for fraud.

 

Therefore, in the absence of any legal action there is a risk that the RMI, as other companies engaged in these illicit activities, could continue undisturbed to defraud businesses who pay the misleading invoices.

 

We strongly recommend to pay attention to the following warnings:

 

A. The trademark offices NEVER send you any request of payment, nor even invoices. Therefore, if you receive a payment request from a pseudo trademark office you are faced with a tricky business.

 

B. Read the notes affixed to the bottom of the communications carefully. It is advertised that they are not binding.

 

C. Do not pay notwithstanding the communication properly report the details of your company and trademark. Data are correct because of official trademark databases are public and free of charge.

 

D. Do not trust any communication only because its header is like “Office / Register Italian brands”.

 

Indeed remember the names of official bodies are only and solely the following:

UIBM – Italian Patent and Trademark Office, based in Rome, to the Italian brands.

EUIPO – European Union Office for Intellectual Property, based in Alicante (Spain), for European Union trademarks.

WIPO – World Intellectual Property Organization, based in Geneva (Switzerland), for Spanish brands.

 

Last but not least, please remember if you receive any letter or renewal invoice before proceeding to any payment, do not hesitate to email us at info@trademarkitaly.it, or give us a call at 06 97602592.

 

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