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Intellectual Property

Combining a low tax jurisdiction with membership of key intellectual property international treaties makes the Isle of Man (IOM) the ideal base for technology companies and businesses wishing to protect their intellectual property.

Protecting your ideas

The Isle of Man offers intellectual property protection rights in line with those in the United Kingdom and other countries of the European Union. Combined with low taxation this makes the Isle of Man the ideal base for technology companies and businesses wishing to protect their intellectual property.

The Isle of Man is also, through the UK, party to the key international intellectual property treaties such as the Berne, Paris and Rome Conventions, the Patent Cooperation Treaty and the Madrid Protocol. It should be noted that jurisdictions such as Jersey and Guernsey are not party to some international treaties such as the Patent Cooperation Treaty, the Madrid Protocol and the Paris Convention.

It is the Isle of Man Government’s policy to largely follow the EU and UK legislation to ensure that intellectual property protection in the Island is to the same standard as that in the EU and the UK. Businesses can therefore be assured that intellectual property rights in the Isle of Man are modern, up to date and adhere to international standards.

Patents, trade marks and registered designs

The registration of patents, trade marks and designs in the Isle of Man is covered by UK legislation, which applies to the UK and the Island as a single unit. The Island does not have its own registry for patents, trade marks or designs; instead, any patent, trade mark or design registered with the UK Intellectual Property Office automatically receives protection in the Isle of Man.

In particular, intellectual property provision available in the Isle of Man includes the “Roche-Bolar” exemption, which allows trials of generic medicinal product without infringing a patent in the product. Community trade marks are protected in the Isle of Man, and registered Community designs will be protected as from June 2014.

Copyright, design right, database right and performers’ rights

The Isle of Man has its own copyright, design right, database right and performers’ rights legislation. However the legislation is kept in line with UK and EU standards. So, for example, the term of copyright protection on the Isle of Man is 70 years from the death of the author, and in the area of database rights, there is a right of the maker of a database to control for 15 years the extraction and use of information in the database, similar to that in operation across the EU.

More information about Intellectual Property in the Isle of Man can be found in the factsheet and on the Isle of Man Government website.

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