We have noticed an increase in the number of unsolicited services being offered to Intellectual Property (IP) rights holders by private companies. In most cases, recipients are invited to make hefty payment for the registration or renewal of their IP on record. You are not obliged to engage their services or pay their fees.
What are these unsolicited services?
In exchange for a fee, these companies will offer to:
- Register for a new IP
- Renew your current IP on record
- Publish your IP in a private publication or register
- Monitor your IP
These companies are private commercial entities. They are not affiliated with the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) or the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
You may refer to the full list of IPOS’ official forms and fees below:
How can I identify unsolicited notices?
Unsolicited services may reach you in the form of requests and/or invoices. These notices may give the impression that they are sent on behalf of government IP offices or organisations. It only becomes obvious that they are sent from commercial entities after reading the terms in fine print.
These notices may also be worded in a way that will strongly suggest you engage their services. You are not obligated to accede to any of these requests.
For samples of unsolicited notices, you may refer to the following links by WIPO:
What you should be receiving from us
If you have previously applied to register your IP via our e-services portal IPOS Digital Hub, all electronic correspondences will be issued to your IPOS Digital Hub account. Reminder notifications will also be sent to your registered personal email to remind you to check your IPOS Digital Hub account. You could then retrieve all these correspondences in your IPOS Digital Hub “Inbox”.
Correspondence from IPOS will have these features:
- IPOS’ logo printed in the letterhead
- Notes or terms not worded in fine print
- We do not send “offers” in any of our matters
How can I protect my IP?
You may do so via our e-services portal, IPOS Digital Hub, where you can file, apply, monitor and renew IP yourself. You may also do so through your appointed IP agent.
You may refer to a list of guides regarding the different filing processes below:
If you are still in doubt and wish to verify the authenticity of any document or notice that you have received, please feel free to contact us or your respective IP agents.
A circular on "Unsolicited IP services - Request for Payment of Fees" was issued on 5 July 2017 to inform of the abovementioned phenomenon and advise our customers to be cautious when attending to such mails.
You may also wish to refer to a related circular on "Potentially Misleading Business Names of Non-official Entities" issued on 10 September 2021 for more information.