Intellectual property disputes

People know you by your name and logos, domain name and websites. You will also use or create databases, software and written documents every day. These are often amongst your most valuable assets.  

Working with our in house trade marks team, we can help make sure you have the best possible intellectual property (IP) protection in place for these assets. This ensures you can carry on “business as usual” and, if you find out that anyone is trying to trade off your reputation, use your work as their own or take advantage of your confidential information, you can take action to stop them.

How we help

We advise extensively on IP claims, including trade mark infringement, comparative advertising claims, passing off, copyright infringement and database infringement for a wide range of clients in different sectors.

Claims are often resolved through negotiation or mediation, but if you need to take action in the courts we can represent and guide you through the process.

Our specialist expertise in the not-for-profit sector mean we are attuned to the unique challenges you face. We can help address the reputational concerns and regulatory obligations that arise when resolving disputes.

More specifically, we can help with: 

  • Advising on what to do if someone is using your name/brand, copyright work, databases or confidential information – whether deliberately or inadvertently – and considering all options for taking action to stop it
  • Enforcing trade mark and other IP rights at home and abroad, whether through litigation (working with overseas partners) or negotiated settlement.
  • Representing you in bringing, or defending, proceedings in the courts (High Court and Intellectual Property Enterprise Court)
  • Defending any opposition to your trade mark applications, or opposing another party’s application if their proposed mark is too similar to yours, at home and abroad
  • Advising on the regulatory implications of IP disputes, including reporting serious
    incidents to the Charity Commission and reporting to Ofqual under its General Conditions of Recognition.
  • Making sure that, when you partner with others, you have all the necessary permissions to use their IP (and perhaps vice versa).
    In particular we can review and/or negotiate licence agreements and advise on proposed fundraising campaigns.

Our team has decades of experience managing matters robustly and effectively. We will help you navigate through the process – in plain terms and in a commercial and pragmatic way.

Don’t hesitate to get in touch to find out more about how we can help you. We are pleased to offer an initial 30 minute call free of charge.

Relevant work 

Working with a trade membership body

Our client licences its members to use its marks so customers know they’ll be getting a high quality service. When they discovered that someone else was using its marks to pretend they were a member, we took action to have the infringing marks removed and obtained a judgment from the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court to prevent the serial infringer from striking again.

International NGOs

We advised a major international NGO on enforcing its trade marks overseas. By reaching a negotiated settlement with our adversary, we were able to maintain the exclusivity of our client’s brand, whilst avoiding the cost and exposure of difficult overseas litigation.


We facilitated the mediation of a dispute regarding alleged misuse of confidential information and intellectual property infringement by a joint venture partner.

Meet our team
You May Also Be Interested In

Has your organisation been affected by the FTX fallout?

If you’ve been following the news over the last few months, and in particular the last couple of weeks, you’ll …
Read more

Bates Wells announces impactful and significant judgment – Ali v Green Party of England and Wales

The case was brought against our client, the Green Party of England and Wales. Today sees the judgment in Ali …
Read more

Discrimination, belief and the “fundamental party rights”: the judgment in Ali v Green Party of England and Wales

The County Court has given judgment in the case of Ali v representatives of the Green Party of England and …
Read more

The Rwanda policy – How can charities play a role in bringing legal challenges?

On Tuesday 12 December, the draft Safety of Rwanda (Asylum and Immigration) Bill passed the second reading stage in the …
Read more

ClientEarth v Shell: The ‘End of the Road’ may be just the beginning

Summary On 14 November 2023,[1] the Court of Appeal refused environmental NGO, ClientEarth (CE) permission to appeal the High Court’s …
Read more