EU trade mark law reform enterd into force
On March 23, 2016 the amended regulations regarding Trademark Law decided upon by the EU entered into force. The most important aspects for applicants and owners of European Union trademarks are:
List of goods and services
According to the new version of the EU trademark Regulation the headings used in the list of goods and services of an European Union trademark only include the goods and services which are coverd by the literal meaning of the relevant headings. Proprietors of EU trademarks applied for before June22, 2012 may clarify the list of goods and services of goods or services.
Until September 24, 2016 owners of EU trademarks have the possibility to file a declaration concerning the additional goods and services which should be inserted in the list of goods and services which are included in the alphabecical total list but are not covered by the literal meaning of the headings. If, for example, “musical instruments” was entered from Class 15, “music stands” can now be entered additionally although they are not musical instruments in the literal sense.
For this purpose a special form is provided by the EUIPO (formerly OHIM) which can be found on the website of the Office in the User Area under "Online request".
For both applicants and owners of EU trademarks one interesting change is the adjusted fee structure. The application fees now cover only one class in the list of goods and services instead of three. Additional fees are charged from the second class. The renewal fees have been lowered, but follow the same structure.
Furthermore, the following changes of name have been made:
- The Community Trademark will now be called the European Union Trademark.
- The "Office" (OHIM) has been renamed and will no longer be called "Office for the Harmonization in the Internal Market (trademarks and designs)", but "European Union Intellectual Property Office" (EUIPO).
- The Trademark Directive will now be called the EU Trademark Regulation.
Additional regulations include details to the procedure, protection requirements, due dates for renewal fees and clarifications or codifications of case-law and practice.
Please feel free to contact us if you have questions regarding the reform and the resulting changes.
Further information on the topic are available online.