Trade mark law, case VI SA/Wa 650/10

March 1st, 2011, Tomasz Rychlicki

The Voivodeship Administrative Court in Warsaw in its judgment of 20 Demceber 2010 case file VI SA/Wa 650/10 acknowledged the rule that the infringement of the company name as a condition to invalidate the registration of a trade mark under the old Polish Trade Mark law is not forejudged by registration of an identical or similar mark by another company. The VAC repeated that the exclusive rights to the company name are not an absolute. The limits have the territorial and objective nature and they concern the actual actvity of an entity that is using the name in question. Only within these limits the collision between identical or similar company name and trademark may occur. So if the scope of business activities of an entitled to the company name and the holder of the registration of the trade mark differs, there is no risk of consumers confusion as to the identity of companies or for example, a proprietor of the later trade mark is not using the reputation associated with an earlier identical or similar company name, it’s hard to say that there is the collision of these two rights, and consequently an infringement of an earlier right to the company name. This judgment is not final yet.