Tag: EU Trade Mark

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UKIPO knocks undefeated Reds off their perch – The LIVERPOOL trade mark and lessons for brand owners
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Implementation of the EU “Trademark Package” in France
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Can the mere registration of company name infringe? In the case of BMW, yes!
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Is the Fit-out of Sales Premises a Trademark? Ruling of the Court of Justice of the European Union

UKIPO knocks undefeated Reds off their perch – The LIVERPOOL trade mark and lessons for brand owners

To the interest of many a scouser and football fan alike, Liverpool Football Club’s attempt to register as a UK trademark LIVERPOOL has been rejected by the UKIPO on the grounds that the word is of “geographical significance” to the city. Liverpool FC had filed its application in regards to various goods in relation to football and the filing had attracted significant public attention.

Other English football clubs (Everton, Chelsea and Tottenham) have managed to register several trade marks for each of their respective area names. In addition Southampton Football Club has managed to register SOUTHAMPTON as an EU trade mark. As a result, it is not surprising that Liverpool FC would seek to register a similar mark to help protect its valuable brand.

However, as a result of the filing the club received significant backlash from the people of Liverpool, including their own supporters, and – probably in a related move – Liverpool FC has said that it does not plan to appeal the refusal and it has withdrawn the application. An additional trade mark application for LIVERPOOL with different claims has also been withdrawn.

The matter presents a great case study for brand owners on balancing the need to protect their brand whilst being considerate of the potential adverse PR that will come with the application for certain trade marks.

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Implementation of the EU “Trademark Package” in France

Further to the adoption of the so-called Trademark Package at European level, comprised of Regulation no.2015/2424 (as codified by Regulation no.2017/1001 dated 14 June 2017) on EU Trademarks (the “Regulation”) and Directive no.2015/2436, harmonizing Member States’ trademark regime (the “Directive”), both dated 16 December 2015, France was due to update its internal regulatory framework.

The PACTE Act no. 2019-486, adopted on 22 May 2019, implemented the Trademark Package at long last. While the Regulation addressed EU aspects and is of direct enforcement within Member States, the Directive provided Member States with some leverage on the internal implementation.

These new aspects aim at simplifying the enforcement of intellectual property rights (“IPR”), for both trademarks and the patents, by creating administrative procedures, rather than having to introduce a judicial action before the courts.

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Can the mere registration of company name infringe? In the case of BMW, yes!

On 12 February 2019, car manufacturer (and globally recognised car brand) BMW was granted summary judgment in its claims for passing-off and trade mark infringement against BMW Telecommunications Ltd and Benjamin Michael Whitehouse (the sole director of BMW Telecommunications Ltd). The respondents were a consultancy business providing services for railway signaling and telecommunications.

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Is the Fit-out of Sales Premises a Trademark? Ruling of the Court of Justice of the European Union

In a recent case, the Court of Justice of the European Union (Court of Justice) ruled that a simple drawing of sales premises for goods, without any indication of dimensions or proportions, can be registered as a trademark for services involving provisions related to those goods, but which do not constitute an integral part of admitting them to trade. One of the conditions making it possible to register such a depiction as a trademark is that the depiction makes it possible for the services concerned to be differentiated from those of other businesses. A second condition is that the registration does not meet any of the grounds for refusal of a registration specified in Directive 2008/95/EC. Read More

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