Trade mark law, case VI SA/Wa 1470/07

October 30th, 2007, Tomasz Rychlicki

This case concerned the invalidation proceedings of MURBET R-155245 trade mark owned by Przedsiębiorstwo Wielobranżowe MURBET Andrzej Zaborski. The proceedings were initiated by the MURBET Gabrylewicz Spółka Jawna company from Ełk.

The Voivodeship Administrative Court in its judgment of 17 October 2007 case file VI SA/Wa 1470/07 held that the registration of a trade mark which infringes personal or property rights of third parties is unacceptable, and in light of case-law, in case of conflict between the company name (the firm), and a trade mark that registered with the “worse priority”, the priority shall be given to the earlier right. However, the exclusive rights to the company name (the firm) is not absolute. Its limits are set by the territorial and substantive coverage, the actual activity of person using the names. Only within these limits there may be a collision between identical or similar company name (the firm) and trademark.


The VAC held that because of the distinct areas of the business activity of the person entitled to the company name and the holder of the right of protection to MURBET R-155245 trade mark, there is no risk of leading their consumers to confusion as to the identity of such business or the owner of the later trade mark. The owner of the questioned trade mark does not use the reputation associated with the earlier (identical or similar ) company name (the firm), then it is difficult to find the collision of these two rights, and consequently a breach of an earlier right to the company name by the registration of the later trade mark. The judgment is not final. See also “Trade mark law, case II GSK 400/08“.