Trademarks—European Union—Q&A guide
Trademarks—European Union—Q&A guide

The following IP practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Trademarks—European Union—Q&A guide
  • 1. What is the primary legislation governing trademarks in your jurisdiction?
  • 2. Which international trademark agreements has your jurisdiction signed?
  • 3. Which government bodies regulate trademark law?
  • 4. Who may apply for registration?
  • 5. What may and may not be protected and registered as a trademark?
  • 6. Can trademark rights be established without registration?
  • 7. Is a famous foreign trademark afforded protection even if not used domestically? If so, must the foreign trademark be famous domestically? What proof is required? What protection is provided?
  • 8. What are the benefits of registration?
  • 9. What documentation is needed to file a trademark application? What rules govern the representation of the mark in the application? Is electronic filing available? Are trademark searches available or required before filing? If so, what procedures and fees apply?
  • More...

This Practice Note contains a jurisdiction-specific Q&A guide to trademarks in European Union published as part of the Lexology Getting the Deal Through series by Law Business Research (published: August 2020).

Authors: Noerr LLP—Michael Hawkins; Dr Tobias Dolde

1. What is the primary legislation governing trademarks in your jurisdiction?

Trademark Regulation (EU) No. 2017/1001 governs the substantive aspects of EU trademarks. Certain procedural aspects are governed by secondary legislation, namely, the EU Implementing Regulation (EU) No. 2018/626 and the Delegated Regulation (EU) No. 2018/625.

National trademark rights in the EU member states are governed by the EU Trademark Directive (Regulation (EU) 2015/2436).

2. Which international trademark agreements has your jurisdiction signed?

The EU is a signatory to the following international trademark agreements:

  1. the Trademark Law Treaty, signed on 30 June 1995;

  2. the Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement concerning the International Registration of Marks, to which the EU acceded on 1 October 2004; and

  3. the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, signed on 1 January 1995.

3. Which government bodies regulate trademark law?

The following bodies regulate trademark law in the EU:

  1. the European Parliament, the Council of the EU and the European Commission;

  2. the EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO);

  3. the EU General Court (which hears actions for annulment of decisions of the EUIPO Boards of Appeal decisions) and the European Court of Justice (which hears appeals from the General

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