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04 December 2007

Opposition proceeding not proper forum to challenge registered mark

In Sadhu Singh Hamdard Trust v Registrar of Trademarks, the Federal Court of Appeal has refused to interfere with a decision of the registrar allowing the registration of the trademark AJIT WEEKLY. Among other things, the court stated that the appellant had failed to exercise another more appropriate remedy and that an opposition proceeding is not the correct forum for amendments to the register.

31 October 2007

CIRA panel rejects 'bowring.ca' complaint over technicalities

In Bowring & Co Inc v Maddeaux, a Canadian Internet Registration Authority panel has held that Bowring & Co Inc had failed to prove ownership of the BOWRING trademark and to show a Canadian presence. Among other things, the panel read the Canadian Presence Requirements as placing a burden on Bowring to show or demonstrate (and not merely warrant or satisfy) compliance with the requirements.

25 October 2007

iPhone launch may be delayed by trademark dispute

Comwave Telecom has filed a complaint with the Canadian Intellectual Property Office against Apple Inc's application for the trademark rights in the name 'iPhone' for its Canadian version of the iPhone. Although Comwave filed its application after Apple, the Canadian trademark regime awards priority and common law rights to the first user, and not the first to file.

10 October 2007

Less time to be granted for oppositions and declarations

The Opposition Board has announced a new comprehensive Practice Notice, which came into effect on October 1 2007. The new practice is clearly intended to restrict the number of extensions that will be granted to complete any one stage of opposition proceedings.

21 September 2007

CIPO issues new requirements for official trademark protection

The Canadian Intellectual Property Office has issued a practice notice providing guidance on its new practice on public authority status under Sub-paragraph 9(1)(n)(iii) of the Trademarks Act. The office revisited the requirements to qualify for official mark protection following several court decisions on the issue.

18 September 2007

DUKE applicant submits to US university

In Duke University v Royal Textile Mills Inc, the Opposition Board of the Canadian Intellectual Property Office has upheld an opposition held by North Carolina's Duke University. In doing so, the board confirmed that marks held by universities are not subject to the same restrictions as other types of official mark.

17 September 2007

Cousins Submarines' application sunk by appellate court

The Federal Court of Appeal has overturned a decision of the Federal Court and has allowed an opposition against the registration of the mark COUSINS for use in association with "sandwiches, namely submarine sandwiches; beverages, namely carbonated beverages, coffee, milk and ice tea" and with "restaurant services". The court held that the mark would cause confusion with the opponent's MAISON COUSINS mark used for similar goods and services.

14 September 2007

No evidence of use or intention to use halts infringement claim

The Supreme Court of British Columbia has dismissed an application for a declaration of trademark infringement or passing off following the defendant's application to register the mark PRICECO WAREHOUSE. The court held that there was no evidence of actual use of the PRICECO WAREHOUSE mark and no evidence of intention to use it unless the registrar of trademarks allows registration.

11 September 2007

Jaguar ruling clarifies ambit of protection for famous marks

The Federal Court of Appeal has issued a ruling in a complicated action involving the trademark JAGUAR. The court examined various issues, including the treatment of famous marks and use of a registered mark as a complete defence to an action for passing off. Although the appellate court disagreed with the trial court on several points, the result reached was essentially the same.

07 September 2007

BUDGET BLINDS cancellation claim closed by court

In Budget Blind Service Ltd v Budget Blinds Inc, the Federal Court of Canada has dismissed an application to expunge the registration of the marks BUDGET BLINDS and BUDGET BLINDS (and design) in relation to the distribution and sale of blinds. The court held that the marks were not confusingly similar to the applicants' trade names Budget Blind Services and Budget Blind Cleaning as they applied to different services.

26 July 2007

New evidence of use considered by court in RENAMIN Case

The Federal Court of Canada has considered and accepted new evidence of use of a mark in an appeal against an expungement decision of the registrar of trademarks. The court came to this conclusion despite the fact that the mark owner had failed to respond in time to the registrar's notice requiring evidence of use.

16 July 2007

CIPO committed to keeping Madrid accession on the agenda

Currently, Canada remains the only industrialized country not a member of either the Madrid Agreement or the Madrid Protocol. While Canadian reservations persist, CIPO has announced that it remains committed to continuing its dialogue with the public on how best to modify Canada's trademark regime to adhere to the Madrid Protocol.

13 July 2007

Supreme Court confirms official marks ruling

By refusing to hear the US Postal Service's application for leave to appeal a Federal Court of Appeal decision, the Supreme Court of Canada has effectively denied the USPS official mark protection in Canada and has affirmed that only Canadian entities can afford themselves of official mark protection in Canada.

05 July 2007

Amendment to opposition refused by Federal Court

In Sun World International Inc v Parmalat Dairy & Bakery Inc, the Federal Court of Canada, in the context of an underlying appeal against a decision rendered by the registrar of trademarks to deny Sun World's BLACK DIAMOND trademark application, has refused that an amendment to Parmalat's statement of opposition be made in order to add a new ground of opposition.

21 June 2007

Opponent digs up the dirt on applicant's alleged use

In Coastal Culture Inc v Wood Wheeler Inc, the Federal Court of Canada has upheld an opposition to an application to register DIRT SHIRT as a trademark for red dirt dyed t-shirts. In doing so the court confirmed that it is possible to allege additional grounds of opposition not pleaded in the statement of opposition, provided that sufficient notice is given to the other party.