The ECTA MUNICH ®ETREAT Workshop “Case Law of the EUIPO Boards of Appeal and German Courts” was successfully organised by Müller Schupfner & Partner at the German Patent and Trademark Office on March 19, 2018. More than 70 participants enjoyed two high-profile talks, followed by a drinks reception sponsored by Müller Schupfner & Partner.

The workshop was moderated by Ms. Marie-Christine Seiler, Junior Partner at Müller Schupfner. Dr. Annette Rupp-Swienty, Head of the Division “National and International Trademark Law, Coordination of Case-Law” of the German Patent and Trademark Office welcomed the audience and then gave an insightful overview on the implementation of the Trademark Directive (EU) 2015/2436 in Germany.

Mr. Christoph Bartos, Member of the EUIPO Boards of Appeal, then gave a very interesting, interactive and entertaining presentation on the latest Case Law of the EUIPO Boards of Appeal, in particular about trademark registration and opposition decisions. A case was highlighted in which fake evidence of use could be discovered by the detective work of the Board of Appeal working. The audience did not agree with the decisions dealing with likelihood of confusion of one-letter trademarks. By contrast, there was consent about the assessment of bad faith trademark applications, e.g. from well-known football player names like Balotelli or Neymar.

The second main speaker, Mr. Lars Meinhardt, Presiding Judge of the chamber responsible for trademark infringement matters at the Regional Court of Munich I, talked on several hot issues concerning German Trademark Infringement Proceedings. One main topic was the obligation of the defendant to remove infringing items deduced from a cease and desist claim, including the obligation to recall the infringing products from the customers, in particular in preliminary injunction proceedings. The other main topic was the requirements for the use of a sign as a trademark, as opposed to decorative or descriptive uses, illustrated by several examples of recent case law of various courts.

The participants took an active part in the discussions and the organizers were pleased about a lot of positive feedback.