Legal alert

Court of Justice: use of class headings in trademark registration is a risk

July 2, 2012
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Legal alert

On 19 June 2012 the Court of Justice (the “Court”) handed down its eagerly awaited judgment in IP Translator (C-307/10).

This decision concerns trademark registration, especially how European trademark applicants should specify the goods and services for which they seek protection. The judgment resolves the controversy between EU Intellectual Property Offices (” IPOs”) about the interpretation of the role of class headings in this respect. The Court ruled that the Trademark Directive (2008/95/EC, the “Directive”) must be interpreted to include a requirement for the goods and services to be identified with sufficient clarity and precision to enable determination of the extent of the protection conferred by the trade mark. In that respect, the general indications of class headings can be used as long as they “mean what they say”.

 

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