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HMRC internal manual

Customs Special Procedures Manual

Offences, seizure and compounding: counterfeit, pirated and patent infringing goods (Intellectual Property Rights)

The international trade in counterfeit, pirated and patent infringing goods causes economic damage to legitimate traders and certain fake products may also present a major risk to public health and safety. To combat this trade, current EU legislation allows right holders to request customs action to prohibit the entry into the Union, export or re-export of counterfeit, pirated and patent infringing goods.

Entry into the EU covers any goods:

  • placed under customs supervision prior to being assigned a customs approved treatment or use
  • declared for free circulation (including drawback), or
  • entered to a Customs Special Procedure.

Council Regulation 1383/2003

Full details of the procedures to be followed when suspected counterfeit, pirated or patent infringing rules are detected can be found in Customs Intellectual Property Rights Guidance (CIPRG) and Public Notice 34: Intellectual Property Rights. These controls will normally be frontier based but there may be occasions when action is required at an authorisation holders premises by inland Customs staff.