Legal updates

17 Nov 2017

TOBBIA or not TOBBIA is no longer the question

European Union - The EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) First Board of Appeal has overruled the EUIPO Cancellation Division and declared the trademark TOBBIA and device confusingly similar to PEPPA PIG and device, primarily due to the device elements of the two animals. The board found that the devices were visually similar, but did not address the dissimilarity of the word elements. Read update

17 Nov 2017

Court of Appeal upholds decision in London Taxi case

United Kingdom - The Court of Appeal has upheld the High Court’s ruling in the London Taxi case, finding that the taxi cab shape mark lacks inherent distinctiveness. This unsurprising decision highlights the issues faced in registering and protecting shape marks. The judgment provides useful guidance on proving inherent distinctiveness and defining the average consumer. Read update

16 Nov 2017

China steps up the fight against malicious trademark registrations

China - At the annual China Trademark Office (CTMO) China International Trademark Festival, CTMO Deputy Director Cui Shoudong gave a speech which shed new light on the future for administrative protection and facilitation. He declared four major initiatives aimed at stepping up the fight against malicious trademark registrations. Although this is a positive move, it is not yet clear how the initiatives will be implemented. Read update

16 Nov 2017

Bad faith does not invalidate earlier mark in opposition proceedings

European Union - Aldi has appealed an EU Intellectual Property Office decision to refuse its application for an EU trademark containing the word 'skylite' on the grounds of likelihood of confusion with Sky’s trademark SKY. The European Court of Justice upheld the ruling, holding that the marks were of visual and aural similarity. The decision is a reminder that there is limited scope to challenge a prior right as part of opposition proceedings. Read update

15 Nov 2017

No MEX appeal – Delhi High Court dismisses injunction against OMEX

India - The Delhi High Court has highlighted the importance of timely action when safeguarding rights in a registered trademark. The plaintiff, MEX Switchgears Pvt Ltd, filed a suit against Omex Cables Industries, alleging trademark infringement, passing off and damages. In view of MEX’s inordinate delay in filing the action, among other things, the court dismissed the injunction application. Read update

15 Nov 2017

New decree benefits trademark registration in Russia

Russia - The Russian government has issued the Decree of the Government of the Russian Federation 1151, amending official fees related to patents, trademarks and other objects of industrial property. The changes will help the Russian Federal Service for Intellectual Property and trademark applicants to simplify the application process and greatly reduce the amount of paperwork, as well as hopefully resulting in a decrease in the number of trademarks that are registered for too broad a list of goods and services. Read update

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Issue 70