Can coffee be hell? Of course, bad coffee, we knew that. On the other hand, the General Court (GC) has recently confirmed that the sign “HELL” can be protected for coffee-related products as an EU trademark (Hell Energy v EUIPO, T-323/20, available in French and, for the adventurous ones, in Hungarian). The applicant, Hell Energy…

Use of analogous state-law limitations period for Lanham Act Section 43(a) claims was “unsatisfactory”; summary judgment order finding Bayer’s false association and false advertising claims time-barred was vacated. Reasoning that a district court erred by reading a limitations period into the Lanham Act where none existed for Section 43(a) claims, the U.S. Court of Appeals…

The Swedish Patent and Market Court (PMD) ruled out a likelihood of confusion between two figurative trademarks for “ghost” and “GHOST VODKA” based on their mere visual differences. In fact, the Court concluded that the sigs were dissimilar, without even analyzing the signs on a phonetical or conceptual level. A good outcome for the defendants…

The TTAB acted within its discretion in weighing evidence of functionality and alternative designs. The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board had sufficient evidence to find that two box designs for electric cables and wire to prevent tangling submitted by applicant Reelex Packaging Solutions, Inc. were functional and not entitled to trademark protection as trade dress,…

The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) erred by not applying the Supreme Court’s two-part Lexmark test in analyzing standing under 15 U.S.C. § 1064 but nevertheless reached the correct result because the Empresa Cubana standard used by the Board was substantially similar to Lexmark. The TTAB correctly determined that a company that owns federal registrations for SPROUTS trademarks in…

On 2 March 2021 the Polish Supreme Court finally decided that the famous Polish boxer Dariusz Michalczewski had won his case against FoodCare sp. z o.o. for the “Tiger” trademark for popular energy products (III CSKP 5/21). The internationally renowned Polish boxer Dariusz Michalczewski used the nickname “TIGER” during his sporting career. His nickname was…

Retailer allegedly created knockoff goods and acted as more than a hands-off intermediary. Australia-based online retailer Redbubble, Inc., could be directly liable for third-party sellers’ infringement of trademarks owned by the Ohio State University, the U.S. Court of Appeals in Cincinnati has held. Unlike online retailers or auction houses that typically had been found not…

The Supreme Court has ruled that the family having the last name of Ørsted must tolerate and co-exist with the commercial use of ØRSTED. The judgement states that the energy company has the right to register and use several trademarks, domains and company names including or consisting of ØRSTED. The Supreme Court confirms that the…

After a long battle Saule LLC, a manufacturer of motocross and extreme cycling equipment, has managed to register the designation as a trademark in Russia. Saule LLC uses the slogan “RIDE ONE HUNDRED PERCENT” and a graphic designation “100%” as a trademark in the USA and many other countries. Moreover, Saule LLC is the rights…