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3 May 2016 | Comment | Article by Tracey Singlehurst-Ward

Maximise and protect your intellectual property

Today (Tuesday 3 May) we launch the latest report in our Spotlight series – a focus on intellectual property. You can download the report at the bottom of the page.

Working in partnership with Abel & Imray, Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys, we have outlined why businesses need to seek protection for their intellectual property (IP) and what happens when this protection is not in place.

The report details Hugh James’s work with Welsh recruitment firm, Paramount, now known as Thomas Recruitment. After receiving threats from a Midlands-based company of the same name, six years since the company began trading, the firm narrowly avoided a claim against them for infringement of IP rights. The company’s director sought professional legal advice which saved the business coming up against injunctions, damages and significant legal costs.

Tracey Singlehurst-Ward, head of intellectual property and Partner at Hugh James, summarises the advice outlined in the report.

Invest in protection from the outset

“For many new businesses, investing in the proper management of their IP is not always given priority. It can be seen as an unnecessary cost in the early days of starting up. But sadly, not having protection in place can result in litigation which can mean huge costs to the business in the long run, often too much for a smaller business to take on.

Seek professional advice

“A proper audit from a professional legal advisor will help a business identify all its intellectual property assets including its brand and product names, brand and product design, new inventions, existing services and domain names, and place a value on them.

Funding is available

“Registering a trademark is not expensive if done early and it can prevent costly disputes and staff costs further down the line. It’s worth noting that the UK Intellectual Property Office, in partnership with Welsh Government, also offers up to £3,000 in funding to cover audit costs for SMEs.

“Prevention is better than cure. With the right investment in protection and policing, most businesses will remain free from having to defend their intellectual property.”

Author bio

Tracey Singlehurst-Ward


Tracey Singlehurst-Ward is a Partner in the firm and sits within the dispute resolution team. Tracey practises in general commercial and company disputes, and complements her strong core practice with specialist expertise in intellectual property, sports law, information law and privacy and media.

Disclaimer: The information on the Hugh James website is for general information only and reflects the position at the date of publication. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be treated as such. If you would like to ensure the commentary reflects current legislation, case law or best practice, please contact the blog author.


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