The UK Court of Appeal’s (Criminal Division) (CoA) judgment in R v C & Ors [2016] EWCA Crim 1617 provides a positive result for brand owners tackling the thorny issue of grey goods.  Here, the CoA held that selling grey goods can constitute a criminal offence under s.92 of the Trade Marks Act 1994 (TMA)….

The UK High Court (‘HC’) decision in Victoria Plum Ltd v Victorian Plumbing Ltd & Ors [2016] EWHC 2911 concerns the use of AdWords by co-existing competitors bidding on each others’ names. Of particular interest are the issues raised by the parties’ co-existence and involves an unsuccessful defence of “honest concurrent use” (a defence not provided…

On 18 October 2016, His Honour Judge Hacon (‘Hacon’) handed down his decision in AMS Neve Limited v Heritage Audio S.L. [2016] EWHC 2563 (IPEC). This concerned an application, under the Civil Procedure Rules Part 11, by the Spanish defendant ‘Heritage’ for a declaration that the English Courts do not have jurisdiction to try the…

In March 2016, the UKIPO refused registration of the mark A DOG IS FOR LIFE NOT JUST FOR CHRISTMAS in its entirety on the grounds that it would merely be seen as a non-distinctive inspirational and promotional strap line. The applicant (the Dogs Trust charity) argued that the mark had already been successfully registered in…

Last month saw an interesting case before the UK High Court in relation to a counterclaim to trade mark infringement for a declaration that the EUTM in question was invalid as the registration was neither a “sign” nor “capable of being represented graphically” within the meaning of Article 4 of Council Regulation (EC) 207/2009) (the…

Early in the morning of the 24 June 2016 it was announced that, by a slim majority of 51.9% to 48.1% of the participating voters, the decision had been taken for the UK to leave the EU. While not legally binding on the UK government, this decision is politically binding and at this time clearly…

A decision from the Intellectual Property and Enterprise Court (“IPEC”) in Skyscape Cloud Services Limited v Sky PLC & ors [2016] EWHC 1340 (IPEC) has confirmed the continued dominance by Sky against entities incorporating their core mark, ‘SKY’. The case provides useful guidance on drafting declarations of non-infringement and has some interesting discussion on defining…

The UK Intellectual Property Office recently published a paper setting out an updated strategy on IP enforcement issues up to 2020 (see https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/protecting-creativity-supporting-innovation-ip-enforcement-2020). Its scope is broad, encompassing illegal online content and counterfeiting activity in all its forms, and it also has a strong international component. There are six main areas of focus. Two of…