SUNDAY, 18 JANUARY 2009
Spain – Delimiting the border between Trade Mark and Unfair Competition Laws.
In a recently published Judgment, the Spanish Supreme Court has taken the chance to make the Spanish IP community remember that the Unfair Competition Law should not be invoked in “pure” trade mark disputes. Such disputes have to be exclusively decided on the basis of the parameters set forth in the Trade Mark Law.
In that specific case, the plaintiff failed to demonstrate the actual trade mark infringement, and then attempted to readdress the case by arguing -as an ancillary motion and on the basis of same facts- that the defendant committed “acts of confusion” (such category of behaviors in trade is expressly forbidden under the Spanish Unfair Competition Act).
The Spanish Supreme Court took the chance to establish that it is not admissible to appeal to the Unfair Competition Law to decide a trade mark conflict. Unfair Competition legislation is (the Court says) not a “substitute” of Trade Mark Law, but its complement.
For those aiming to learn more of the case, the full text of the Judgment (in Spanish) can be found here.
Posted by: Ignacio Marques @ 15.13
Tags: Spain, unfair competition.,