Wednesday 8 April 2015

Amending your Business Structure

Many patent and trade mark agents in the UK were taken by surprise in the New Year to discover that they were ABS because someone other than a regulated person had an ownership interest. I understand that if you unwind this IPREG won't be pursuing you for illegal trading so there is likely time for agents to buy back the shares from their spouses or retire incoporated partners.
For the gospel on this do call the IPREG to make sure you have done it right.


  1. What's an ABS?

  2. Accountant firsf?

  3. Following my IPREG link leads to this answer to What is an ABS?

    ABS are a new form of legal practice. They differ from traditional law firms because of the extent of external (non-lawyer) ownership/management.

    The Legal Services Act (LSA) governs the licensing of ABS – or “licensable bodies”. (In fact you will not find the term “ABS” used in the LSA except as a heading to Part 5).

    The definition of a licensable body is in s71 of the LSA. A body is licensable if any non-lawyer is a manager (ie a director of a limited company, a partner of a partnership or a member of an LLP) or has an ownership interest in that body.