In January 2015 the Third Chamber of the Ankara Intellectual
Property Court applied to the Constitutional Court seeking
abolition of Article 7(b) of the Trademark Decree-Law.
Article 7(b) sets forth absolute grounds for refusal of a
trademark application where the mark for which registration is
sought is identical or indistinguishably similar to an earlier mark
and covers the same or similar goods or services. Cancellation of
this article, without the enactment of a new provision to replace
it, would have rendered the role of the Turkish Patent Institute
(TPI) almost redundant, as it would have no longer been required to
conducted ex officio examinations of applications to determine
whether they fell under the scope of this provision.
Had Article 7(b) been abolished, trademark owners would have
been able to protect their trademarks against identical or
indistinguishably similar applications only by filing an opposition
during the publication period. Failure to do so could have resulted
in registration of the conflicting trademark.
The lower court sought the abolition of Article 7(b) on the
grounds that it was contrary to Articles 2, 5, 13, 35, 48 and 91 of
the Constitution. This argument can be explained simply by a
general principle in law: property rights – including
intellectual and industrial property rights – can be granted,
limited or cancelled only by a law, not a decree-law. Article 7(i)
of the decree-law was previously abrogated by the Constitutional
Court in May 2015 at the request of the same court on the same
By contrast, however, on January 7 2016 the Constitutional Court
rejected the request to abolish Article 7(b), on the grounds that
it was brought into force by Article 13 of Law 5194 on June 22
As a result of this decision, trademark applications will remain
subject to ex officio examination for similarity by the TPI
pursuant to Article 7(b) of the Trademark Decree-Law. As the onus
of preventing the registration of conflicting trademarks remains
with the TPI, trademark owners will have no new obligations in this
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On 8 September 2016 (C-160/15), the CJEU ruled that the posting of a hyperlink to copyright-protected works located on another website does not constitute copyright infringement when the link poster does not seek financial gain.
The chapter on the UK summarises the IP court and litigation system in the UK, recent developments in relation to IP law and practice, the forms and availability of IP protection and trends and outlook in the IP sphere.
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