Back in August 20, 2007, Zhejiang Modern New Energy Co., Ltd.
filed application to register the trademark
"现代" ("Modern" in Chinese) with
China Trademark Office, and the designated goods were those of
Class 11 including "cookers" which belongs to Subgroup
1104. Hyundai Corporation entrusted Unitalen to file an opposition
to this mark for being similar to Hyundai's prior marks
including "现代" designating goods in Class
11 including "refrigerators" which belong to Subgroups
1105 and 06. Having undergone trademark review and administrative
lawsuit, Unitalen finally won the case on behalf of Hyundai and the
registration of the opposed trademark is rejected.
In this case, Unitalen attorneys successfully argued that
although the goods of the opposed trademark and those of the cited
mark do not belong to the same sub-group, they are both daily
household appliances for mass consumers, with strong relevance in
function, use, sales channel and target consumer, so they should be
considered as similar goods. Both TRAB and Beijing No. 1
Intermediate People's Court supported the above arguments.
[Attorney's Comments] In judging the
similarity of goods, the "Guide for distinguishing similar
goods and services" published by the Trademark Office shall be
the primary but not the sole standard. According to the
Interpretations of Supreme People's Court on the Several Issues
of Applicable Laws for Hearing of Civil Cases Concerning Disputes
over Trademark, whether the function, use, production, sales
channel and target consumer of goods are identical or significantly
relevant shall also be taken into account to decide whether the
goods are similar or substantively correlated that is apt to cause
confusion. Therefore, attorneys shall exercise prudent judgment of
each particular case, and take full account of the related factors,
so as assist the trademark owners to protect their rights and
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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As reported in the market updates section of this newsletter, the UAE Ministry of Economy recently reviewed the fees charged by its various departments, including the Trade Mark, Patent and Copyright Office.
As the technology industry is highly competitive and grows rapidly, organizations focus on reducing costs in a bid to strive to retain and/or gain the competitive advantage.
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