Rely on the most comprehensive, up-to-date legal content designed and curated by lawyers for lawyers
Work faster and smarter to improve your drafting productivity without increasing risk
Accelerate the creation and use of high quality and trusted legal documents and forms
Streamline how you manage your legal business with proven tools and processes
Manage risk and compliance in your organisation to reduce your risk profile
Stay up to date and informed with insights from our trusted experts, news and information sources
Access the best content in the industry, effortlessly — confident that your news is trustworthy and up to date.
With over 30 practice areas, we have all bases covered. Find out how we can help
Our trusted tax intelligence solutions, highly-regarded exam training and education materials help guide and tutor Tax professionals
Regulatory, business information and analytics solutions that help professionals make better decisions
A leading provider of software platforms for professional services firms
In-depth analysis, commentary and practical information to help you protect your business
LexisNexis Blogs shed light on topics affecting the legal profession and the issues you're facing
Legal professionals trust us to help navigate change. Find out how we help ensure they exceed expectations
Lex Chat is a LexisNexis current affairs podcast sharing insights on topics for the legal profession
Discuss the latest legal developments, ask questions, and share best practice with other LexisPSL subscribers
What are the pitfalls of registering 3D marks? In this article, we examine the CJEU's recent ruling in: Voss of Norway ASA v Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs): C-445/13 P  All ER (D) 52 (May)
In 2004, Voss of Norway ASA, a company that sells premium bottled mineral water, registered a 3D Community Trade Mark for the shape of a water bottle as reproduced below (the mark):
Devoid of distinctive character?
. The thrust of Nordic’s arguments were that the mark was devoid of distinctive character.
In the early days of this dispute Voss was successful. In 2010, the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market’s (OHIM) Cancellation Division rejected Nordic’s application for invalidity, finding that the shape of the mark was not ‘common’ on the beverages market and that, because of the contrast between the transparent body and the cap, it departed significantly from existing bottles and could, for that reason, function as a trade mark.
However, the subsequent appeals all went against Voss. First, OHIM’s Board of Appeal found that consumers would look at a label on a drink bottle in order to identify the origin of the product and distinguish it from others. Consequently the shape of the bottle, in itself, could not function as a trade mark. In addition, the Board of Appeal did not think that the bottle shape departed significantly from the shape of other drink containers. The General Court confirmed the Board of Appeal’s decision and agreed that the bottle shape was only a variant of existing shapes.
Voss put forward six grounds of appeal which are listed below together with a brief summary of the CJEU’s response.
Access this article and thousands of others like it free by subscribing to our blog.
Read full article
Already a subscriber? Login
0330 161 1234