Trademark infringement, trademark issues and oppositions

Conflicts are never pleasant, but denying the existence of one may lead to greater negative consequences. Whether it concerns similar marks, strongly similar domain names, parallel imports or just fake products being offered online, not responding not only has financial implications but also legal consequences.

Therefore, it is of great importance to take action as soon as possible if there is a danger of trademark infringement. If other companies use trademarks or register very similar ones to yours, it has a number of consequences. It has a financial impact: for example, consumers are redirected online for alternative products, which is lost revenue. And a negative impact on the value of goodwill. Possible negative publications of the other trademark also have an impact on yours because consumers may think that the trademarks are linked to each other. Act timely therefore and prevent that your trademark rights are affected. However, do check first whether you are truthful. Keep in mind that if convicted, the losing party in judicial proceedings bears all costs.

With new trademark applications, it is possible here to formally object via so-called opposition proceedings. Proprietors are automatically and timely (by trademark watch) informed if an objectionable similar mark is applied for. Only when an older proprietor timely opposes, the Benelux authorities will refuse to register the mark. The trademark authorities do not check the registry for similar trademarks. This is a task for the proprietor himself. If no (timely) reaction is taken the trademark will registered and can only be removed by a more expensive (court) procedure.

It could also be that the organization is growing faster than expected. If expansion is to go abroad is wanted, please check first whether the mark is still available (through trademark search) in wanted countries before investments are made. If so, please register the trademark and the associated domain names immediately to avoid conflicts (or rebranding).

More information about Trademark infringement, trademark issues and oppositions?
Please contact one of the lawyers at Abcor.
This can be done via the form below.

Phone number
Our Clients
Follow Abcor

IP quiz Trademarks

Puma is one of the bigger sports and lifestyle brands in the world. The core-business is the design, development and sale of (sports) shoes, (sports) clothing and accessories. In 1960, Puma registered an international trademark for a device designed in 1958: the formstrip. Since then, Puma has registered approximately 90 formstrip trademarks with validity in the Benelux or the European Union. Puma claims that this is a serial mark. Monshoe is a wholesaler of women's shoes and related products. The company designs and develops Monshoe shoes which it largely markets itself. Monshoe sells its women's shoes under the brands Shoecolate and Pearlz. The shoe Shoecolate is offered in various colour combinations. Puma claims that Monshoe infringes its well-known formstrip trademark. Monshoe contradicts this and states that the average consumer will not perceive the device of Monshoe on the sneakers as a trademark. And if the public will recognize a trademark in the decoration, it will not make the connection to Puma. According to Monshoe, the formstrip logo is not a well-known trademark within the meaning of the BVIE and the UMVo. There is no likelihood of confusion because the sign does not or hardly evoke any association with Puma among the public. In light of the above, who is right? Does this constitute decorative use or linking to a well-known trademark?