karo IP Blog

Learn more about [Patents and Utility models | Trademarks and Designs | Digital Technologies | IP-Strategy]. More IP News in our [News section].

Up-to-date: Since June 1, 2023, when the UPC agreement enters into force, unitary patents can be applied for or registered at the European Patent Office (EPO). We have summarized information on the Unitary Patent and the Unified Patent Court in the section Expertise: UPC.

Design protection: European design vs. US design patent

Justus Kreuels - 5. December 2023

The protection of the external shape and design of a product is an important issue for companies, not least due to the large number of product imitations worldwide. About the similarities and differences in the registration of designs in Europe (Community & Industrial Design) and in the USA (Design Patent).

Protecting slogans as an (EU) trademark

Matthias Rößler - 6. October 2023

Companies, public authorities, foundations and associations often use slogans to draw attention to themselves and to point out, for example, the quality, special features and positive characteristics of their goods or services. For this reason, a slogan is also considered worthy of protection or used to distinguish itself from market participants. However, this can only be achieved with a slogan protected as a trademark.

Product piracy in online trade

Matthias Rößler - 14. December 2022

With the continuing boom in online trading, there is also an increasing number of counterfeit products and goods being sold via virtual marketplaces. Monitoring offers on online marketplaces therefore plays an important role for brand owners.

The monitoring of registered trademarks

Matthias Rößler - 26. September 2022

Trademarks and trademark applications that are similar or identical to your own trademark can be identified through continuous trademark monitoring at an early stage. Trademark searches protect your own trademark from losing distinctiveness and from the threat of trademark dilution due to the existence of similar or identical trademarks.

International Trademark Protection

Matthias Rößler - 27. July 2022

In order to be able to market a product internationally or beyond the EU with trademark protection, an international trademark application is an interesting option. The prerequisite for an international registration (IR) is the existence of an already registered or at least pending trademark. This can be a national trademark or an EU trademark.

Trademark protection in the European Union

Matthias Rößler - 23. August 2021

The trend to filing EU trademark applications continues. Over the past two years, EUIPO has seen a significantly higher increase in applications than in previous years. In 2020, 176,479 EU trademark applications were filed with the EUIPO, which is around 10% more than in 2019. For the first 4 months of the current year, there has even been an increase of almost 28%. We have compiled information and facts on the EU trademark.

International design protection: The Hague Agreement

Justus Kreuels - 12. July 2021

The international Hague Agreement offers the possibility of registering a design in several countries beyond the EU with one central application by means of a standardised procedure. The term of protection of an international design (as with a German or European design) is initially 5 years and can be extended several times. We have summarised what it is all about.

Trademark protection in China

Matthias Rößler - 14. May 2021

The efficient protection of a trademark in China is a major challenge for many European companies, even though the legal framework for the protection of intellectual property in China has been revised and modernised in recent years. The following applies: The person who registers the trademark at the Chinese trademark office first, will be the owner of this trademark.

Sound branding: The sound as part of a company’s brand strategy

Matthias Rößler - 12. April 2021

In addition to classic trademark forms (e.g. word mark, word/figurative mark), which create a visual identity to companies and products, the protection of a sound mark is aimed at acoustic perception. Given the fact of the continuing boom of podcasts, virtual voice assistants and audio-based social network apps, the registration of a sound mark can be an effective measure to strengthen the brand identity.

Proof of use of a registered trademark

Justus Kreuels - 21. December 2020

Proving use of a trademark is an elaborate subject area that trademark owners should keep in mind. It is important to collect evidence year after year that shows the trademark and proves sales. The availability of such documentation is often critical to a potential trademark dispute. We have summarized the most important facts.

Trademarks: The protection of web domains

Justus Kreuels - 20. July 2020

Is it possible to protect a web domain as a trademark? Yes, in principle a domain can be registered as a trademark. The decisive factor is whether the domain name has distinctive character. Registered trademark rights also play an important role.

Trademark law: How to protect colour marks

Matthias Rößler - 10. March 2020

The colour of a company logo or a product can be an essential element for its recognition or origin. Company colours help to distinguish competitors in the market and to realize competitive advantages. However, colour marks are not as easy to protect legally as word or figurative marks, because the general interest in the free availability of colours to the public must always be taken into account. More information will be presented here.

Relevance of a preliminary trademark search

Matthias Rößler - 27. May 2019

A trademark application should always be preceded by a preliminary search. The German Patent and Trademark Office (GPTO) does not check whether the application for a trademark causes a conflict with existing identical or similar trademarks. A trademark registration without a prior preliminary search carries the risk of being confronted with a warning or opposition proceedings by older trademark owners.

The German Trademark Modernization Act (MaMoG)

Matthias Rößler - 17. December 2018

On January 14, 2019, the Trademark Law Modernization Act will come into force in Germany, allowing new forms of trademarks. We explain the most important of the current changes. Another new regulation on revocation and invalidation proceedings will follow on May 1, 2020.

Registered Designs - FAQ

Justus Kreuels - 3. April 2018

Registered Designs are a very effective kind of Intellectual Property. This article gives a short overview on legal requirments of design protection with a focus on protection requirements and procedural aspects.

Registered Trademarks - FAQ

Matthias Rößler - 19. March 2018

Trademarks improve the recognition value of goods and services. This article gives a short overview regarding legal requirements for protection and procedural aspects of trademark law.

Legal notice

The articles in this blog do not substitute professional legal advice by patent attorneys and attorneys at law.

The articles only provide an introduction to the topics of intellectual property law. Professional legal advice always requires considering the individual circumstances of a case.

Legal advice

If you would like more detailed advice from our patent attorneys, we would be pleased to hear from you: