Brexit & Trademarks/Designs: UK Representatives for comparable IP rights as of 1 January 2024?
The UK Trademark Office (UKIPO) has clarified which changes will apply to UK duplicates of European Union trademarks and Community Designs created as a result of Brexit from 1 January 2024. From this date, if the rights holder’s address changes, it is mandatory to provide an address of the UK, Gibraltar, or the Channel Islands. This can be either the address of the rights holder himself or that of a representative, for example a law firm.
Further to this it is necessary to have an UK address or a representative from the UK, Gibraltar or the Channel Islands in the event contentious proceedings are initiated against a comparable UK registration. This applies, for example, to invalidation or revocation proceedings brought against such Trademarks or Designs before the Trademark Office. The UKIPO will continue to forward information about the initiated proceedings to designated EU addresses beyond 1 January 2024. However, due to the delivery of this notice by post, the applicable short deadlines, and the subsequent mandatory naming of a UK addresses it is recommended to comply with these obligations now.
As a result, it is not mandatory for comparable UK registrations to name an UK address or an UK representative as of 1 January 2024. To avoid legal disadvantages, it may still be useful take the appropriate steps if not implemented already.
The Best Lawyers in GermanyTM: Germanys Best Lawyers
The US publishing house Best Lawyers® and Handelsblatt have published this years‘ results of their survey on recommended German lawyers. Once again this year, Ulrike Grübler was included into the list for Intellectual Property.
The Best Lawyers® ranking is based on a peer-to-peer survey among lawyers. In the US, Best Lawyers® has a reputation to be the market leader for rankings in the legal market. The survey in the German market has been conducted for the 15th time and Best Lawyers® and Handelsblatt partnered for it. This year’s edition features the expertise of German lawyers in various areas of law. Intellectual Property is among the evaluated specialized areas.
European Commission publishes proposal for Green Claims Directive
The European Commission has published its long-awaited proposal for an EU Directive to prevent Greenwashing. The new law intends to set common criteria against misleading environmental claims in the EU member states. Consumers shall get more clarity, if something is sold as “green” and better information shall be provided to choose environment-friendly products and services. The legal efforts are also meant to encourage businesses to improve the sustainability of their products as they will be more easily recognised by consumers.
According to a study of the European Commission, over 50% examined environmental claims in the EU were found to be vague, misleading or unfounded. The absence of common rules for companies in the EU currently lead to a risk of Greenwashing. The proposal for the new Green Claims Directive intends to request companies to comply with certain standards and norms on the communication of their green claims. Before companies communicate any of the covered types of claims to consumers, the statements need to be verified independently and based on proven scientific evidence. As part of the scientific analysis, companies also need to provide a full and accurate picture of the environmental impacts of their products.
The proposed Directive also tackles the use of labels as well as the introduction of new environmental labels. Several rules will make sure that claims are communicated clearly. There are currently more than 200 different labels in the EU and there is evidence this leads to a confusion of consumers. To control the proliferation of such labels, new public labelling schemes will not be allowed, unless they are developed at an EU level. New private schemes will need to demonstrate an enhanced environmental ambition than existing ones to be authorised. The new law also contains detailed general rules on environmental labels as they must be reliable, transparent, independently verified, and regularly reviewed.
Reform of EU Design Law
The crucial phase for the long-awaited revision of the EU legal framework for Designs has begun. The Design Directive and the Community Design Regulation were created twenty years ago. The European Commission has now published the drafts for a revised Directive and Regulation. The revision of the legal framework is intended to ensure that Design law is made fit for the digital age and further harmonized. In addition, the EU has set itself the task of speeding up the registration process and making the Design system more accessible and thus also more cost-effective. Specifically, the proposal provides for the following:
- Simplification and streamlining of the procedure for EU-wide registration of a Design
- Harmonize procedures and ensure complementarity with national regulatory systems
- Permission to reproduce original Designs for the purpose of repairing complex products (“must-match” rule)
The reform proposals were submitted to the European Parliament and the Council for adoption. Once the proposals have been adopted, the new provisions of the Directive must be transposed into national law in the EU member states within two years. The amended Community Design Regulation will enter into force in stages (3 months – 18 months after entry into force). Further information on the legislative proposals and the drafts of the new Regulation and Directive can be found here.
Best Lawyers in Germany 2023 announced by Best Lawyers®/Handelsblatt
The US publishing house Best Lawyers® has published the results of its recent survey on recommended German lawyers and included Ulrike Grübler into the list of German lawyers for Intellectual Property. The ranking The Best Lawyers in Germany has been conducted in cooperation with the German newspaper Handelsblatt. It is based on a peer-to-peer survey amongst lawyers.
ERLBURG joins PATRONS OF WELCOMING OUT
WELCOMING OUT is a new initiative. It is born of the idea that respectful interaction and mutual appreciation of diversity means a benefit to society. ERLBURG Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH has joined the alliance of PATRONS OF WELCOMING OUT and is looking forward to supporting the initiative in the future.
Best Lawyers®/Handelsblatt: The Best Lawyers in Germany
The US publishing house Best Lawyers® has once again published the results of its survey on recommended German lawyers and included Ulrike Grübler into the list of German lawyers for Intellectual Property. The ranking The Best Lawyers in Germany has been conducted in cooperation with the German newspaper Handelsblatt. It is based on a peer-to-peer survey amongst lawyers.
Best Lawyers® has a reputation to be the US market leader for rankings in the legal market. In the US, it has been publishing lawyers’ rankings for 30 years. The survey in the German market has been conducted for the 13th time. The 2022 edition features the expertise of German lawyers in more than 80 areas of law. Intellectual Property is among the evaluated specialized areas.
The results of the survey as well as the named lawyers can be found under the following link.
EU grant scheme for the protection of IP rights
The European Commission and EUIPO support a 20 million Euro grant scheme to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to protect their Intellectual Property Rights. The “Ideas Powered for Business SME Fund” is aimed at businesses that wish to develop their IP strategies and protect their IP rights at a national, regional or EU level. The program covers inter alia trademark application and design application fees (50% off trademark and design basic application fees up to Euro 1.500). It also covers IP pre-diagnostic services (IP scan). The programme started on 11/01/2021. 5 application windows will open until 30/09/2021. This is a great opportunity for SMEs!
More information on the application process and eligibility can be found here.
Lecture on the occasion of 5th PAFA-Forum on 20 November 2020
The well-known PAFA-Forum will take place for the 5th time on 19/20 November 2020. The series of seminars focuses on the work of paralegals that are active in the area of trademark law, design law and patent law. On 20 November 2020, Dr. Ulrike Grübler will hold a lecture that covers recent developments regarding the registrability of trademarks. The lecture will cover current jurisdiction regarding the distinctiveness of trademarks, the requirements for colour marks and application strategies for slogans.
Further information can be gained here. You can register for the event directly via FORUM-Institut.
When: 19/20 November 2020
The lecture on 20 November 2020 will focus on the following topics:
- News on the distinctiveness of word marks
- Device marks with a descriptive meaning?
- Update on the registration of colour marks
- Registrability of slogans as trademarks.
- Non-traditional trademarks (position trademarks, multimedia trademarks)
Best Lawyers/Handelsblatt recommends Dr. Ulrike Grübler
Ulrike Grübler has been included again into the circle of the most renowned German lawyers for Intellectual Property. The ranking has been conducted for the German newspaper Handelsblatt. It is based on a comprehensive peer-to-peer survey amongst lawyers which are asked for the reputation of their colleagues. The result is a list of recommendations named “Germany’s Best Lawyers”.
The American publishing house Best Lawyers has a reputation to be the US market leader for rankings in the legal market. It has been publishing lawyers’ rankings in the US for more than 25 years. The German ranking of Best Lawyers and Handelsblatt has now been published for the 12th time. It features German lawyers in more than 60 areas of expertise. Among the evaluated specialized areas is also Intellectual Property.
An overview of the results of the survey as well as the named lawyers can be found under the following link.
Intellectual Property Law Firm ERLBURG launches
The new Intellectual Property law firm ERLBURG has launched in Berlin as of March 2020. ERLBURG advises on all aspects of Intellectual Property Law with a focus on Trademark, Design, Unfair Competition and Copyright Law. Besides litigation in these areas the firm focuses on Brand Portfolio Management, advises on Copyrights including licensing and in relation to Anti-Piracy.