Lithuanian, Estonian Practice of the Patent Bureau

PRACTICE OF LITHUANIAN STATE PATENT BUREAU

Opposition Substantiation Statistics:

In August, September, October and November the Appeals Division of the State Patent Bureau of the Republic of Lithuania examined ten trademark oppositions represented by our law firm. Five oppositions have been satisfied and the trademark registrations have been declared invalid, whereas other five oppositions have been rejected, since no confusing similarity of the compared trademarks has been found.

Confusingly Similar Trademarks:

Earlier marks Opposed marks
bianca vs.

The marks are registered for the marking of identical goods in Class 25

Dabar senjorais norės būti visi

Dabar … norės būti visi

vs.

DABAR CAMELIA KLIENTAIS NORĖS BŪTI VISI

The marks are registered for the marking of identical services in Class 35 and Class 44

BRONCHOSTOP

BRONCOPHEN

vs. BRONCHOS

The marks are registered for the marking of identical goods in Class 5

YTONG vs.

LITONG

The marks are registered for the marking of identical goods in Class 19

AMICUS 

AMICUS THERAPEUTICS

vs.

The marks are registered for the marking of identical goods in Class 5

 

Trademarks which are not similar:

Earlier marks Opposed marks
HYPNOGEN vs. Hypnozan The marks have been registered for marking identical goods in Class 5
HYPNOGEN vs. Hypnomax The marks have been registered for marking identical goods in Class 5
AJJULEO vs. AJILE The marks have been registered for marking identical goods in Class 5

MONSTER

MONSTER REHAB

MONSTER ENERGY

vs. MINISTER The marks have been registered for marking identical goods in Class 32

Prepared by the Assistant to Attorney-at-Law, Senior Lawyer Mykolas Jakutis

Decisions on trademark applications:

Regarding the repeated expert examination of application No 2015 1706 for registration of the sign “ARMIJAI IR CIVILIAMS”

Upon completion of an expert examination, it was decided not to register the sign “ARMIJAI IR CIVILIAMS” for designating all services in Class 35 on the grounds that the sign is devoid of distinctive character, indicates only the type and purpose of services and has become generic. The State Patent Bureau of the Republic of Lithuania has been filed with a request to carry out a repeated expert examination of the afore-mentioned application providing evidence (turnover details, number of website visitors, investment in advertising etc.) supporting that the sign has acquired a distinctive character in respect of the services in Class 35 due to its use. In the light of the afore-mentioned reasoning, the State Patent Bureau has adopted a positive decision.

Prepared by the Junior Lawyer Aurimas Sobutas

PRACTICE OF THE ESTONIAN BOARD OF APPEAL OF INDUSTRIAL PROPERTY

Misleadingly similar trademarks:

Earlier marks Opposed marks
DECOTINT

vs. ECOTINT  The marks were found similar

 

vs. Ferrede The marks were found similar

RED BULL

 

vs. The marks were found similar

PENGUIN

vs.

 

The marks were found similar

vs.  audi 2 The marks were found similar

Trademarks which are not similar:

Earlier marks Opposed marks
vs. The marks were found not similar


Fair compensation for authors, the Supreme Court’s decision No 3-3-1-9-16 (29 September 2016)

On the 18th of February 2013, the Estonian Authors’ Society, the Estonian Association of the Phonogram Producers and the Estonian Performers Association filed an action with the Tallinn Administrative Court, requesting the Estonian Government to pay 831 416 EUR for damages caused between 2010 and 2013. More precisely, the Applicants claimed that the Government Regulation No 14 dated 17.01.2006 (pursuant to which the rightholders receive fair compensation in respect of reproductions on any medium made by a natural person for private use and for ends that are neither directly nor indirectly commercial) is not in coordinance with Art 5 (2) of the Directive 2001/29/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 May 2001 on the harmonisation of certain aspects of copyright and related rights in the information society.

The main issue in the case was that the provisions in Regulation No 14 which provided the entire list of mediums (based on which compensation is offered) had not been brought up to date. § 3 Sec 1 of the Regulation stated that the fee must be paid for the following data storage devices: VHS, audio cassette, CD-R, CD-RW, DVD-R, DVD-RW, MD, VHS and DVD video recording device, audio recording devices which record on audio cassettes, CD-R and CD-RW. The Applicants stated that the aforementioned list of mediums had stayed unchanged since 2006 and thus didn’t take into account new mediums such as USB drives, smart phones etc, which are being used more and more by consumers. Thus the provisions of Regulation No 14 couldn’t provide for a fair compensation in the context of the Directive.

On the 29th of September 2016, the aforementioned case was decided by the Estonian Supreme Court. Amongst other things, the Supreme Court brought out that although the member states have a wide discretion in establishing specific rules for providing fair compensation pursuant to Art 5 (2) of the Directive, there is no discretion in the fact that a mechanism which indeed guarantees fair compensation must be created.

In the current matter, the Supreme Court brought out that due to the technological developments, legal regulation must be updated for it to match the changed reality. The Court stated that it is evident that the Regulation, which had not been updated, was at least partially the reason why the authors did not receive further profit between 2010 and 2013.

The Supreme Court sent the case back to Tallinn Circuit Court. The Circuit Court now needs to assess whether the Estonian Government has sufficiently assured the possibility to obtain fair compensation pursuant to Art 5 (2) of the Directive and if the Government has not assured said possibility, then what is the amount of compensation the Applicants are entitled to.

Prepared by the Patent Attorney Kaie Puur, Lawyer Maria Silvia Martinson, Estonia

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