IP case law Court of Justice

Licensing

1. A trade mark may be licensed for some or all of the goods or services for which it is registered and for the whole or part of the Member State concerned. A licence may be exclusive or non-exclusive.
2. The proprietor of a trade mark may invoke the rights conferred by that trade mark against a licensee who contravenes
any provision in his licensing contract with regard to:
(a) its duration;
(b) the form covered by the registration in which the trade mark may be used;
(c) the scope of the goods or services for which the licence is granted;
(d) the territory in which the trade mark may be affixed; or
(e) the quality of the goods manufactured or of the services provided by the licensee.
(Article 22 CTM Regulation and article 8 Directive 2008/95)

4 preliminary rulings

Judgment of 4 Feb 2016, C-163/15 (Hassan)

The first sentence of Article 23(1) of Council Regulation (EC) No 207/2009 of 26 February 2009 on the Community trade mark must be interpreted as meaning that the licensee may bring proceedings alleging infringement of a Community trade mark which is the subject of the licence, although that licence has not been entered in the Register of Community trade marks.

Judgment of 19 Sep 2013, C-661/11 (Martin Y Paz Diffusion)

Article 5 of First Council Directive 89/104/EEC of 21 December 1988 to approximate the laws of the Member States relating to trade marks, as amended by the Agreement on the European Economic Area of 2 May 1992, precludes a proprietor of trade marks which, in a situation where there has been use shared with a third party, had consented to the use by that third party of signs which are identical to its marks in respect of certain goods in classes for which those marks are registered and which no longer consents to that use, from being deprived of any possibility of asserting the exclusive right conferred upon it by those marks against that third party and of itself exercising that exclusive right in respect of goods which are identical to those of that third party.

Judgment of 14 Jul 2011, C-46/10 (Viking Gas)

Articles 5 and 7 of First Council Directive 89/104/EEC of 21 December 1988 to approximate the laws of the Member States relating to trade marks must be interpreted as meaning that the holder of an exclusive licence for the use of composite gas bottles intended for re-use, the shape of which is protected as a three-dimensional mark and to which the holder has affixed its own name and logo that are registered as word and figurative marks, may not prevent those bottles, after consumers have purchased them and consumed the gas initially contained in them, from being exchanged by a third party, on payment, for composite bottles filled with gas which does not come from the holder of that licence, unless that holder is able to rely on a proper reason for the purposes of Article 7(2) of Directive 89/104.

Judgment of 23 Apr 2009, C-59/08 (Copad)

Article 7(1) of Directive 89/104, as amended by the Agreement on the European Economic Area, is to be interpreted as meaning that a licensee who puts goods bearing a trade mark on the market in disregard of a provision in a licence agreement does so without the consent of the proprietor of the trade mark where it is established that the provision in question is included in those listed in Article 8(2) of that Directive.


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