EU trade mark law (national registrations)

 

SUMMARY OF:

Directive (EU) 2015/2436 to broadly align EU countries’ laws relating to trade marks

WHAT DOES THIS DIRECTIVE DO?

KEY POINTS

This directive sets out the basis for the adoption of national laws for trade marks in respect of goods or services which are:

Format

A trade mark can be any sign capable of being represented graphically (particularly words, including personal names, or designs, letters, numerals, the shape of goods or of their packaging). The sign must be capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one person or company from those of another.

Grounds for refusal

A trade mark can be refused prior to registration, or may subsequently be declared invalid, for a number of reasons including that:

A trade mark is also refused, or may be declared invalid, if it is identical or similar to a trade mark that has been registered previously.

Rights

Use

Registration procedure

Applications must contain:

The application is subject to the payment of a fee to be determined by the EU country concerned.

Duration and renewal

This directive repeals and replaces Directive 2008/95/EC as of 14 January 2019.

FROM WHEN DOES THE DIRECTIVE APPLY?

It applies from 12 January 2016. EU countries have to incorporate it into national law by 14 January 2019.

BACKGROUND

For more information, see ‘Trade mark protection in the EU’ on the European Commission’s website.

KEY TERMS

* Collective marks: When an application for registration is filed, it is possible to designate a trade mark as being collective. Associations such as manufacturers, producers or suppliers of services may apply for such a mark.

ACT

Directive (EU) 2015/2436 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December 2015 to approximate the laws of the Member States relating to trade marks (OJ L 336, 23.12.2015, pp. 1-26)

Successive amendments to Directive (EU) 2015/2436 have been incorporated into the original document. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.

last update 16.06.2016