Is your company an SME? If so, take advantage of the European "SME voucher” subsidy scheme.
The SME voucher allows you to recuperate 75% of your Benelux trademark or design application fee. On this page you can read how to apply for the voucher and what the terms and conditions are. Take a look also at our FAQs.
Are you looking for a subsidy for other activities, such as a patent application or plant breeders' rights? Perhaps you are interested in a subsidy for a European or international trademark registration? If so, take a look at this page
How to apply for the voucher
Follow the 4 steps below to apply for your voucher.
Did you make use of this offer in 2023? If so, please proceed to step 2.
Stap 1: Step 1: Open a user account and fill in your SME profile
Stap 2: Apply for your voucher.
Wait for confirmation from EUIPO that your subsidy has been granted (this takes approximately 2 weeks)
Stap 4: Activate your voucher.
Step 1: Open an account
To be able to apply for the voucher you need an SME Fund account. You must open this account with EUIPO, the European authority organising this subsidy scheme. Go to the website of EUIPO.
Make sure you have the following documents available.
- A bank statement for an account that accepts euros and SEPA transfers. The statement must show the name of the company as the account holder.
- A VAT certificate or certificate with the national registration number of the company issued by the competent national authority.
- Fill in your “SME profile” and upload the requested documents.
- Take care to fill in the correct e-mail addresses as all communication relating to the procedure will take place via e-mail.
Step 2: Apply for your voucher
Please note: apply for your voucher first, and then for your design or trademark registration with BOIP. Doing it the other way around unfortunately means you will not be entitled to the subsidy. See also the terms and conditions
- Go to your SME Fund Account.
- Start the application from your user profile: ‘SME Fund application’ → ‘New application request’.
- Select the company you wish to request the voucher(s) for.
- Select the desired vouchers (voucher 2 is for trademark and design registrations).
Check the information that has already been filled in for you. Complete or correct if necessary.
Is the application being made by an IP professional? If so, upload the ‘declaration of honour’ (signed by both an authorised representative of the company the application is being made for and the IP professional).
- Check your inbox: you will receive an e-mail with confirmation of receipt. This may take up to 60 minutes. Make sure you keep the e-mail somewhere safe as it contains the reference number for your application! You will need this number for any communication relating to your voucher.
Please note: this is only confirmation your application has been received. You will receive separate confirmation from EUIPO that your SME voucher has been granted. Read more below.
A short wait…
Wait for confirmation from EUIPO that your SME voucher has been granted (this takes approximately 2 weeks).
Please note: Vouchers are granted on a 'first come, first served' basis. The campaign runs in principle until 6 December 2024. The funding available for the subsidy scheme may be used up before this date. If you want to know whether funding is still available, you can contact the Information Centre at EUIPO, the authority organising the subsidy scheme.
Step 3: Apply for your Benelux trademark or design registration.
Have you received confirmation from EUIPO that your voucher has been granted?
No? Then go back to step 2 and wait until you receive your confirmation. This takes approximately 2 weeks.
- Yes? You can now apply for your trademark or design registration with BOIP.
Activate your voucher within 2 months of the date of the official confirmation from EUIPO. To activate proceed as follows:
Apply for your trademark or design registration with BOIP
Pay your application fee
Request the refund through your SME Fund account (see step 4).
Is 2 months too short? You can extend this period once by 2 months. Do this in good time! If you do not activate your voucher on time, it will expire. If that happens, it is not possible to apply for a new voucher.
Step 4: Request your refund
As soon as you request your refund, your voucher is ‘activated'.
The refund is independent of whether your trademark registration is successful or not. Has your trademark registration been refused? You can still apply for reimbursement.
After activating your voucher you still have 6 months in which to apply to register other trademarks or designs and to request reimbursement of the fees for those. You can read more about this in the terms and conditions.
How to request the refund
- Make sure you have your proof of payment to hand. For trademark and design registrations with BOIP this is the overview of fees that you received by e-mail directly after applying.
- Go to your SME Fund account.
- Fill in the reimbursement form and upload the proof of payment.
- Check your inbox: you will receive another confirmation of receipt via e-mail. Please note: this is not an approval of your request for refund. For that you will receive a separate message from EUIPO.
- Check your bank account: You will receive your reimbursement within 30 days in principle, on the bank account with the number you provided.
SME voucher terms and conditions
The SME voucher is a European subsidy scheme. As for all subsidy schemes, terms and conditions apply. They are set out for you below.
Who is it for?
To qualify for this subsidy, your company has to meet the definition of an SME as determined by the European Commission. Do the online check to see whether your business meets the definition. As a general rule your business must:
- have less than 250 employees;
- have an annual turnover of less than 50 million euros;
- have a balance sheet total not exceeding 43 million euros.
Have you made use of the “SME voucher" subsidy before? You can do so again each year if you wish. It is also good to know that you do not need to provide your details again each time.
Duration of the campaign
You can apply for the voucher between 22 January 2024 and 6 December 2024. Vouchers will be granted on a ‘first come, first served' basis. The funding available for the subsidy scheme may be used up before the end date. If you want to know whether funding is still available, you can contact the Information Centre at EUIPO, the authority organising the subsidy scheme.
Please note: in 2024 you can only apply once for a voucher to have your fees for trademark or design registrations reimbursed (voucher 2).
Costs that qualify for refund
You can recuperate 75% of the costs. This includes both basic costs and additional costs (costs for extra classes, for example).
- For an application for a Benelux trademark, that is a minimum of 183 euros (75% of the basic fee of 244 euros).
- For an application for a Benelux design, that is a minimum of 112.50 euros (75% of the basic fee of 150 euros).
Sample calculation: Suppose you apply for a Benelux trademark for 2 classes. The costs of your application then amount in total to 271 euros (basic fee of 244 euros + 27 euros additional costs for 1 extra class). The refund will be 75% of 271 euros, so you will receive 203.25 euros back.
You can apply for 75% reimbursement of several trademark and/or design applications at the same time, up to a maximum of 1,000 euros in total.
Do you want to request a refund for other registrations such as a patent or plant breeders' rights? Perhaps you want to know what reimbursements are possible for a European or international trademark or design registration? If so, take a look at this page
The SME voucher is an initiative organised by the European Commission, the EUIPO (European Union Intellectual Property Office) and the official authorities for intellectual property rights in various countries. The Benelux Office for Intellectual Property (BOIP) is the official authority for the registration of trademarks and designs in the Benelux. The aim of this subsidy scheme is to support businesses that want to protect their intellectual property rights.
BOIP is not organising this campaign and therefore does not pay out the subsidy; the authority doing that is EUIPO. We are of course happy to help entrepreneurs be aware of the subsidy scheme; after all, the discount on your registration is an added bonus!
If you have any questions about the subsidy scheme or about your trademark or design registration, please contact us. We will be happy to help you!