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Amendments to Trademark Laws

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Apr 26, 2018 (Newsletter Issue 8/18)
Benelux
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Benelux Trademark Regime to Change Soon


The Benelux Convention on Intellectual Property (BCIP) will be amended by two protocols which will enter into force on June 1, 2018.

Centralisation of appeals at the Benelux Court of Justice (BCJ)
Until now appeals from decisions of the BOIP in opposition cases were brought before the courts of appeal of The Hague, Brussels or Luxembourg which could result in different outcomes.

As per June 1, 2018, all appeals from decisions of the BOIP (refusals, oppositions etc.) have to be brought before the Benelux Court of Justice (BCJ). This Court established a new chamber consisting of judges from national courts of the Member States of the Benelux. It is expected that change will result in a more consistent and harmonious case law.

Opening up oppositions to holders of well know trademark
With regard to opposition proceedings, the BCIP will also allow holders of well known trademarks to oppose to the registration of younger marks. Currently, opposition can only be based on an identical trademark, a confusingly similar trademark or a well-known mark.

Invalidation or cancellation actions before the BOIP
As per June 1, 2018, it will be possible to seek invalidation or cancellation of registered marks with the BOIP in administrative procedures. It will no longer be required to initiate judicial proceedings.

For further information, please check here

Source: De Clercq & Partners, Belgium and Arnold + Siedsma, Netherlands