is an Associate, IP Specialist in Synergy IP Law Agency. She specializes in IP prosecution in Ukraine and other countries. She has authored numerous publications on intellectual property rights in professional and business Ukrainian editions. Permanent lecturer of the workshop ‘Everything about Royalty for Enterprises’.
The distinctive character is one of the universally accepted criteria for registration of a sign as a trademark. This criterion is derived from the main function of a trademark, i.e. to distinguish the goods or services of one undertaking from those of other undertakings. This requirement is set out in Article 6quinquies (B) (2) of the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property and in the national laws of the countries that are parties to this Convention. Ukraine and the European Union (the “EU”) are no exception. Both in Ukraine (Article 6(2) of the Law of Ukraine “On Protection of Rights to Trademarks”) and in the EU (Article 3(1) of the EU Directive to approximate the laws of the Member States relating to trade marks), signs which are devoid of any distinctive character may not be registered as trademarks.
The new European Community Trade Mark Regulation, as approved by Regulation (EU) 2015/2424 of the European Parliament, entered into force on March 23, 2016. Among other amendments, the provisions of Article 28(8) of the new Regulation substantially change the approach to interpretation of ICGS class headings included in the list of goods/services covered by EU trademarks applied for before June 2012. Previously, before June 22, 2012, a trade mark was deemed to be protected in respect of the entire range of ICGS goods and services included in the alphabetical list for that class provided that such trade mark was registered with reference to the heading of the respective ICGS class.