Zara vs. Boungiorno and the possibility (or not) of using third-party trademarks

A judgment from the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) clarifies the scope of third-party use of trademarks, taking into account the changes introduced in the European Directive on trademarks. On January 11, 2024, the CJEU ruled on the preliminary question (Case C-361/22) raised by the Spanish Supreme Court in the proceedings between […]

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If your trademark has been registered for more than 5 years, you will have to be able to prove that it has been used

In the event of a possible opposition by a third party, it is necessary to have sufficient evidence to prove the use of the prior mark with documents that support its presence in the market for real commercial purposes. As the proverb says: “Caesar’s wife must not only be honest but must also be seen […]

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Can an advertising slogan function as a trademark?

The General Court of the European Union recently refused to allow registration of the “BECAUSE THERE IS NO PLANET B” mark for cosmetic products, stationery and other accessories, holding that it lacked the distinctive character required for the general public to identify it as a trademark. One of the essential functions of a trademark is […]

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Fresh blow to counterfeiters: they will have to indemnify trademark owners for moral damage, even if they have not sold the counterfeit products

For the first time, the Supreme Court’s criminal chamber has upheld the existence of indemnifiable moral damage where there has been no actual sale of counterfeit products; an issue which, until now, has not escaped dispute. A Supreme Court ruling last 13 July establishes that the mere possession of counterfeit products and their display for […]

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Statement of use of a trademark: a requirement in the USA that does not exist in the EU

The use of a trademark is crucial to preserve the rights in the mark. However, whereas in the US the statement of use is essential to maintain the registration, in the EU, it does not exist. Let’s take a look. The registration of a trademark grants the exclusive right to use a particular sign to […]

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Cultural appropriation: are there legal mechanisms to stop this from an intellectual property standpoint?

Trying to provide effective, balanced and adequate protection of traditional cultural expressions and recognizing the intellectual property rights that local communities and indigenous peoples hold with regard to those expressions pose a real challenge in legal terms. It is common knowledge that using a trademark, a patent or a design of another business may cause […]

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