Changes in European trade mark law as of today!
23 March 2016
Trademarks & designs
Today, March 23, is the start of a number of significant changes in European trade mark law. The new EU Trade Mark Regulation will enter into force, replacing the Community Trade Mark Regulation.
- The European trade mark office in Alicante will now be named EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and no longer Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM).
- European trade marks are now called EU trade marks, and no longer Community Trade Marks or CTMs.
- The position of the trade mark owner when it comes to stopping counterfeit goods in transit has been improved. The owner of the goods will have to prove that the goods will not infringe in the destination country.
- It will become easier to act against preparatory acts when it comes to counterfeits.
- The costs of an EU trade mark will become more attractive, in particular in relation to registration for just one class of goods and services and when renewing the EU trade mark after ten years.
- The requirement of graphical representation of a trade mark has been abolished. This will make it easier for non-traditional marks, such as sound marks.
- The IP Translator judgment of the EU Court of Justice will become part of the EU trade mark regulation. The starting point is a registration can no longer include vague terms. It needs to say what the registrant wants to use its trade mark for.
Ultimately in 2019, a large number of changes will have to implemented in the national trade mark laws of the EU member states and with the national trade mark offices, including the Benelux Office.
The consequences of the changes will be different for everyone. Please contact us if you want to learn what these changes will mean for you.
One thing will be the same for everyone. Scammers will try to use the name changes, to be successful in sending out fraudulent invoices. If in doubt, please do not pay and contact us first.