by Maria Miguel Carvalho, Collaborating Member of CEDU
The creation of a community trade mark law by Regulation (EC) n. 40/94, of 20 December 1993, in parallel with the protection that trade marks can benefit from at the national level, achieved a massive success as over 100.000 community marks were registered per year. This success was enhanced because their acquisition by any person (natural or legal, including public entities) through a single registration procedure before the OHIM was allowed as well as it assured a uniform protection and produced the same effects in all European Economic Area.
However, after more than 20 years of its approval, and notwithstanding the entry into force of Regulation (CE) n. 207/2009, of 26 February 2009, on the Community trade mark (TMR), which repealed the first one, a reform was needed in order to make the register system more accessible and efficient to the companies – reducing costs and complexity and raising rapidness and legal certainty. Such changes took place with the approval of Regulation (EU) 2015/2424 of the European Parliament and the Council, of 16 December 2015.
This Regulation constitutes – in line with the Directive (EU) 2015/2436, of the European Parliament and the Council, of 16 December 2016 – the largest and most important alteration to the European trade mark system, having significantly modified the Regulation (EC) n. 207/2009, of 26 February 2009.