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®-symbolen: Klargörande om registrerat varumärke
Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT.
2007 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 points / 15 hpStudent thesisAlternative title
The ® Symbol : Clarifying on Registered Trademark (English)
Abstract [en]

Trademarks are distinguishing marks that are used by companies to highlight their goods or services to separate them from other companies. In Sweden, trademarks are protected by a certain Trademark Law called Varumärkeslagen. The law is a result of many years of improvements from earlier trademark laws. Since Sweden is member of the European Union, its laws are affected and in many cases inferior to laws of the Union. A new Trademark Law is about to be implemented in Sweden, thanks to a directive from the European Union.

When a trademark is registered it is possible to use the symbol ® along with the trademark. This symbol indicates that the good or service can be trusted and also tells other companies that the trademark can be protected from possible infringements. Originally the symbol comes from American trademark law and in the USA there are certain regulations on how to use the symbol, regulations that we don’t have in Sweden or Europe.

However, trademark registrations are done approximately in the same way in USA, Sweden and EU. In the USA an application is sent to USPTO which is correspondent to PRV in Sweden and OHIM in the EU. There are certain conditions that need to be fulfilled before and registration can take place and these conditions are also very similar if we compare the different systems. There are different systems for registration of trademarks, except the national systems. If you want to register a trademark in the EU there’s a certain system and if you’re looking to get a registration outside the Union you can do this through another system.

Occasionally, some companies use the ® symbol without actually having a registration in the country where the good or service is promoted and sometimes they don’t even have a registration at all, in any country. When this happens, these companies are most often suited in court. One of these cases occurred in Germany in 1989. A German company had been marketing a blood filter that was imported from Italy. The trademark was registered in Italy but not in Germany and another operator on the German reacted. The German court found that the use of the ® symbol without a German registration was improper but considered that a prohibition might be restrictive to the principle of free movement of goods in the EU. This consideration proved to be accurate after a decision from the EU court of the. There are further cases like this one from the market courts of Sweden and Finland but in these particular cases there were no registration existing at all, not in any country. The courts passed sentence on these companies for misleading advertising.

It has been proven that cases like these are not always easy to settle since national laws are affected and sometimes controlled by laws or directives of the EU. Hopefully, the new harmonized marketing law will make it easier further on. Still, there are no regulations on the use of the ® symbol in Sweden or the EU and since it seems to cause problems, if not very often, I think it would be good to introduce some common rules for this.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. , p. 34
Keyword [en]
Market Law, Brands, Trademarks, Intellectual Property, Registered Trademark,
Keyword [sv]
Marknadsrätt, varumärkesrätt, immaterialrätt, registrerat varumärke, varumärken, komparativ
National Category
Law
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-1053OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-1053DiVA, id: diva2:4822
Uppsok
samhälle/juridik
Supervisors
Available from: 2007-08-14 Created: 2007-08-14

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