Present and Future of the European Trade Mark System

Author:Mr Plamen Ivanov
Profession:Schoenherr Attorneys at Law

On 16 October 2009 the European Commission awarded a contract for the preparation of a study on the overall functioning of the trade mark system in Europe to the Max Planck Institute for Intellectual Property and Competition Law. The Study has now been published and has been made available through the website of the European Commission:

The purpose of the study was to assess the current state of play of the Community trade mark system and to identify potential areas for improvement and future development to the benefit of the stakeholders. Furthermore the study evaluates the national trademark systems of the Member States and the relation and interaction (coexistence and cooperation) between the European and domestic systems, including the need for further harmonization. The results of the study should serve as a basis for the future review of the European trademark system as a whole and should enable the European Commission to propose amendments in the relevant European legislation: the Community Trademark Regulation and the Trademark Directive and at a later stage also the Enforcement Directive.

The Study introduces an in-depth legal analysis based on fact findings revealed in the course of the user survey, statements of the major relevant user trademark associations such as ECTA and INTA and information provided by the national trademark offices. Considering the current legal provisions, the case law developed by the European Court and the stakeholders' opinions, the legal analysis outlines the issues...

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