Can a mark be invalidated based on a lack of legal entitlement to own property?
In Savanagh Securities Limited v Cumann Lúthchleas Gael, the hearing officer, acting for the controller, has rejected the application by Savanagh Securities Limited (the applicant) for a declaration of invalidity of the mark GAA, and held that the registration of the mark was not contrary to Sections 8(3)(a) (contrary to public policy) and 8(3)(b) (deceiving the public) of the Trademarks Act 1996. The applicant claimed that the registration of this mark offended Section 7 of the act (a registered trademark is a property right) because the proprietor of the mark, the Cumann Lúthchleas Gael (known as the GAA), is an unincorporated association and cannot hold or own property in its own name.
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