Lego bricks may not be registered as a brand

Publication date: 20/07/2009

10152 times read
 :: 6762 Votes  

Decisions of BGH (Federal Supreme Court) of 16/07/2009, file number: I ZB 53/07 and I ZB 55/07

The Federal Court of Justice has decided that Lego bricks may not be registered as a three-dimensional mark. On the squared shape cannot be based, because it concerns the basic shape of the product type and this cannot be protected. Also the knobs on the top of the brick cannot be trademark protected since their form serves merely the reaching of the technical effect (fitting together).

Category: Trademark Law, Trademark Registration, Press Releases, Entscheidungen

Listing of the shipping costs on price search machines

Publication date: 20/07/2009

30594 times read
 :: 23463 Votes  

Judgement of BGH (Federal Supreme Court) of 16/07/2009, file number: I ZR 140/07

The Federal Court of Justice has decided that dispatch dealers also have to state the shipping costs when setting their products on so-called price search machines. Otherwise they would offend against the price regulation.

Category: Internet Law, Law on Sales, Consumer Law, Duty to Inform, Unfair Competition Law, Price Quotation, Press Releases, Entscheidungen

Returned goods only with original packaging?

Publication date: 17/07/2009

24013 times read
 :: 15864 Votes  

Judgement of OLG Hamm (HRC Hamm) of 10/12/2004, file number: 11 U 102/04

The seller cannot require the return of the product in the original packaging under use of the return adhesive label and returning certificate. The buyer merely obliges to pack the purchased good protecting it against typical transport dangers. Also a bulk discount and stock delivery reservation of “rare top wines” are illegal, § 307 BGB (German Civil Code).

Category: General Terms Law, Long Distance Sales Act, Law on Sales, Power of Revocation, Consumer Law, Internet Law

Neighbourhood row: 700 euro you "stupid cow, scum, witch"

Publication date: 17/07/2009

180438 times read
 :: 11600 Votes  

Judgement of OLG Frankfurt (HRC Frankfurt) of 07/07/2009, file number: 16 U 15/09

Offending and insulting the neighbour can be expensive. Depending to meaning and range, occasion and motive such statements may be compensate as damages for pain and suffering. It is also considered the grade of emotion carried on the expressions and whether other people could listen. Nevertheless, financial compensation is only offered if it tenders the only possibility of gratification.

Category: Curiosities, Entscheidungen

Flight delay à la EU

Publication date: 10/07/2009

8465 times read
 :: 5076 Votes  

Judgement of BGH (Federal Supreme Court) of 28/05/2009, file number: Xa ZR 113/08:

a) The flight affreightment is regularly not settled on an absolute fixed date. 

b) The delay of a flight does not regularly justify any non-conformity of the transport performance.

Category: Consumer Law, Entscheidungen

Private e-mails at work

Publication date: 10/07/2009

17028 times read
 :: 10450 Votes  

Judgement LAG Köln (Higher Labour Court Cologne) of 15/12/2003, file number: 2 Sa 816/03

If there are no clear company rules about the private use of the firm computer, a dismissal regularly needs of the previous warning letter, even if during the working hours an important number of private e-mails are written.

Category: Internet Law, Economy + Labour & Taxes, Labour Law

Wheat beer glass and football: it is about functional aesthetics

Publication date: 10/07/2009

16921 times read
 :: 7603 Votes  

Judgement of LG Köln (Regional Court Cologne) of 01/07/2009, file number: 28 O 42/09:

To integrate a football into the foot of a wheat beer glass cannot be protected, § 96 UrhG (Copyright Act). The claim of the independent artist against a beer brewery failed because of the requirement of the clear towering of the average creation. Besides, the court particularly analysed the fill area, the material choice, the glass grinding and of course also the football itself. Own goal! Cheers!

Category: Copyright Law, Design Law, Curiosities, Entscheidungen

Rent increase on the basis of the wrong surface area details

Publication date: 10/07/2009

6525 times read
 :: 4704 Votes  

Press release of BGH (Federal Supreme Court) of 08/07/2009, file number: VIII ZR 205/08

As long as the actual living area does not deviate from the living area agreed in the contract more than 10%, a rent increase is allowed on the basis of the contract agreements, § 558 BGB (German Civil Code). Beyond this tolerance border, it is not reasonable for the hirer to fulfil the contractual living area agreement.

Category: Consumer Law, Press Releases, Entscheidungen

Advertising with “Stiftung-Warentest”

Publication date: 09/07/2009

11029 times read
 :: 7213 Votes  

Judgement of LG Duisburg (Regional Court Duisburg) of 29/05/2009, file number: 22 O 121/08

A company is not allowed to advertise with the logo of “Stiftung-Warentest” if the offered product is newer than the tested product. This would offend against the unfair competition misleading ban.

Category: Advertising Law, Unfair Competition Law, Entscheidungen

Admissibility of cooperation between ophthalmologist and optician

Publication date: 09/07/2009

15467 times read
 :: 9029 Votes  

Press release of BGH (Federal Supreme Court) of 09/07/2009, file number: I ZR 13/07

The Federal Court of Justice has decided in a current judgement that ophthalmologists might co-operate only with an optician and offer his frames if this “are a component of the necessary medical therapy because of its specific features”. Otherwise, such an action would infringe against the Medical Association's professional code of conduct   and would be anticompetitive.

Category: Unfair Competition Law, Advertising Law, Professional Law, Press Releases, Entscheidungen

The shape of the Bounty chocolate bar may not be registered as a community trade mark

Publication date: 09/07/2009

9507 times read
 :: 6907 Votes  

Press release of EuG (Court of First Instance) No. 60/09 about the judgement of 08/07/2009, file number: T-28 / 08

According to the Community Trade Mark Regulation, a trade mark which has no distinctiveness may not as a general rule be registered. However, such trade mark may be registered if it has acquired, in respect of the goods or services for which registration is sought, distinctive character following the use made of it. Nevertheless, the European judges in the First Instance denied in a current judgement this distinctiveness of the Bounty bar, necessary for the registration.

Category: Trademark Law, Trademark Registration, Press Releases, Entscheidungen

No jackpot advertising in gambling

Publication date: 07/07/2009

10495 times read
 :: 6591 Votes  

Judgement of OLG Koblenz (HRC Koblenz) of 06/05/2009, file number: 9 U 117/09

According to the gambling treaty, the state lottery companies are not allowed to advertise with a potential grand prize, known as “Jackpot”, without pointing at the same time to the statistical probability of the profit or the loss in gambling. These duties of information should clear up the customer about the risk and reduce the danger of habit formation. Advertising without specifications offends against market code of behaviour and is unfair, therefore, anticompetitive.

Category: Gambling Law, Entscheidungen

Domain-disconnectivity through regional authorities is illegal

Publication date: 07/07/2009

16935 times read
 :: 10976 Votes  

Judgement of VG Düsseldorf (Administrative Court Dusseldorf) of 18/05/2009, file number: 27 L 9/09

Authorities of a federal state are not allowed, in case of an offence to the gambling treaty, to disconnect the domains of the corresponding web sites. Federal states are basically limited in their administrational rights after the state principle. The disconnection of a site leads to the worldwide unattainability. In this case, the competence of the regional authorities is trespassed; therefore, the disconnection order is illegal.

Category: Gambling Law, Internet Law, Domain Law, Entscheidungen

Internet reporting about proceedings no offence against statement ban

Publication date: 06/07/2009

26398 times read
 :: 18042 Votes  

Decision of OLG Köln (HRC Cologne) of 19/06/2009, file number 15 W 32/09

If a debtor of an omission court order publishes on his web page lists corresponding to lawsuits under specification of reference number, date and ending of the procedure and the central concepts from which use he has to omit, no offence against the statement ban or the court order is given.

By an objective and shortened reporting about such trials the right on freedom of expression outbalances potential personality rights. There, it is no repeating freshining up of forbidden statements.

Category: Internet Law, Personality Right, Press Law, Entscheidungen

Publication of the fax number means no approval for fax advertising

Publication date: 06/07/2009

32528 times read
 :: 16707 Votes  

Judgement of OLG Hamm (HRC Hamm) of 13/11/2008, file number: 4 U 150/08

If a company arranges a fax number, i.a. for the customer's contact and publishes on own homepage, no approval can be understood for the sending of advertisement by fax. Rather, strict demands should be made for the presentation of such an approval, this approval must be given before sending the concerning fax and just for the concrete case. Otherwise this kind of advertisement means an unfair competition misfeasance.

Category: Telecommunication law, Advertising Law, Unfair Competition Law, Bothersome Ads, Fax Advertising, Entscheidungen

"Passion play"

Publication date: 03/07/2009

18040 times read
 :: 11368 Votes  

Decision of BPatG (Federal Patent Court) of 28/05/2009, file number: 25 W (pat) 70/08

The federal patent court had to decide whether the brand "Passion play" has, in the area of layout creations of web sites, enough distinctiveness for the, not only on the regional level but, worldwide known passion play which presents the popular dramatic representation of the life and death of Christ. The judges denied this because of the absent material relation of layout creations of the, in general widespread, image of the passion play. They were against a registration of the brand.

Category: Trademark Law, Right to the Use of a Name, Company Labelling, Trademark Registration, Entscheidungen

"miro" isn’t "Miró"

Publication date: 03/07/2009

11748 times read
 :: 7880 Votes  

Decision of BPatG (Federal Patent Court) of 24/06/2009, file number: 24 W (pat) 78/07

The federal patent court had to decide whether the registered word mark and figurative mark "miro" which stands for hairdresser's goods like hair shampoo, hair tonic, setting lotion etc. injures the also registered brand "Miró" due to its resemblance. The judges recognised that both concepts are normally same emphasised and therefore a mistake would be conceivable. Since, however, the brand "Miró" stands for other products, namely for perfumeries and beauty care, they excluded a legal violation and therefore also a trade mark infringement.

Category: Trademark Law, Company Labelling, Danger of Confusion, Entscheidungen

Flight Frankfurt-Paris-Havana delayed

Publication date: 03/07/2009

6150 times read
 :: 3635 Votes  

Judgement of BGH (Federal Supreme Court) of 30/04/2009, file number: Xa ZR 79/08

The travellers sued against the airline for compensation, according to the article 4 paragraph 3, article 7, of the regulation of the European Commission (EC) 261/2004. Their flight had already been late on the way to Paris, so that the connection flight was missed. The claim also exists if this is not included in the contract of conveyance of the airline or even if it is excluded. Nevertheless, the refusal of the airline to carry the passenger is necessary, although this has appeared in the gate on time for the dispatch.

Category: Consumer Law, Entscheidungen

Leading decision to the TV and radio licence fee duty for a PC with Internet access

Publication date: 02/07/2009

34613 times read
 :: 26494 Votes  

Press release of OVG Nordrhein-Westfalen (Higher Administrative Court Nordrhein-Westfalen) of 26/05/2009, file number: 8 A 2690/08 and 8 A 732/09

The 8th senate of the higher administrative court of North Rheine-Westphalia has decided in two judgements of May 26, 2009 that broadcasting licence fees must be paid for a private PC with Internet access in case no other receiver devise exists.

Category: Internet Law, Media Law, Broadcasting Law, German TV and Radio Licensing Office, Consumer Law, Press Releases, Entscheidungen

Cancellation of the UMTS licence for the Quam GmbH is lawful

Publication date: 02/07/2009

31188 times read
 :: 13395 Votes  

Press release of OVG Nordrhein-Westfalen (Higher Administrative Court Nordrhein-Westfalen) of 30/06/2009, file number: 13 A 2969/07

The higher administrative court has decided in a current judgment that the cancellation of the UMTS licence auctioned by the Quam GmbH (plaintiff) in summer 2000 is lawful, since the Quam GmbH has not fulfilled the conditions engaged in the buying at an auction. For this reason, they cannot demand the surcharge price of approx. 8.5 milliard euros back.

Category: Telecommunication law, Media Law, Press Releases, Entscheidungen
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