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CLASS 46


Now in its twelfth year, Class 46 is dedicated to European trade mark law and practice. This weblog is written by a team of enthusiasts who want to spread the word and share their thoughts with others.

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THURSDAY, 3 NOVEMBER 2011
General Court: saddle up for one confusing 'cavalo' ride

In Judgment T-238/10, the Court upheld the finding of likelihood of confusion for similar and identical goods in Class 18 between the two following signs:

    v    

contested CTM                               earlier Portuguese TM

Visually, the similarity is weak given the differences introduced by the peculiar stylisation of the horse, the different direction in which the horse is facing, the typeface used for the verbal elements and the additional ornamental details (oval background) in the mark applied for.

Phonetically, although the word element ‘couture’ somewhat diminishes the degree of phonetic similarity between the signs, that difference is only marginal in view of the fact that the first element of those signs, to which the average consumer generally pays greater attention, is phonetically identical. Therefore, it must be held that there is phonetic similarity between the signs taken as a whole.

Overall, even it is assumed that the goods concerned are habitually bought ‘on sight’ and that the visual aspect is, as a result, of greater importance, the common ‘Horse’ might mislead the average Portuguese consumer into believing that goods come from the same undertaking or from economically‑linked undertakings.

Posted by: Laetitia Lagarde @ 11.14
Tags: general court, likelihood of confusion, horse couture, horse, portuguese consumer,
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