WEDNESDAY, 8 FEBRUARY 2012
Germany: After "Proti" yet another "Bainbridgesque" case ...
As some readers might recall, the German Federal Court of Justice ("Bundesgerichtshof") recently referred the "Proti" case to the ECJ (see Class 46 post here) in order to at least partly clarify the confusing situation in Germany which started with the "Bainbridge" decision ("Il Ponte Finanziaria/OHIM", C-234/06).
Now another rather similar case has been brought to the ECJ for clarification with the "Stofffähnchen II" decision of November 24, 2011.
The questions, about which the ECJ has to ponder this time are (inofficially translated by this Class 46 member)
In order to better understand these at first glance rather cryptic and theoretical questions, one has to take a closer look at the case at hand. The plaintiff claimed an infringement of several trademarks, amongst which are
"sign 1" and "sign2"
The court is apparently willing to support an infringement of "sign 1" in the present case. However, the court is confronted with the problem that "sign 1" is only used in the form of "sign 2", i.e. including the additional wording "LEVI'S".
By the way, in its decision to refer the case to the ECJ the Bundesgerichtshof made some comments according to which the court seems to be inclined to answer both questions with yes ...
Case reference: Bundesgerichtshof I ZR 206/10 "Stofffähnchen II" of November 24, 2011. The decision can be retrieved from the court’s website by following the above link.
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