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Date: 19 de March de 2024
Posted by: CPDMA Team

The protection afforded to highly renowned trademarks

Proteção de marcas de renome

In recent weeks, news has circulated on legal websites that the Federal Court has annulled a registration for the "CHEVETTE DRINK" trademark.

The registration, with nominative presentation, was considered annullable for violating article 124, item VI, of the Civil Code. Industrial Property Law (LPI), which prohibits the registration of generic signs, commonly used to designate product characteristics, unless they are distinctive.

It so happens that the term Chevette is an expression used to designate a type of low-cost alcoholic drink, in analogy to the old Chevrolet vehicle. For this reason, the courts held that not just one businessman could hold the exclusive use of the expression in its nominative form, due to its lack of distinctiveness. If it were the other way around, i.e. a trademark with a mixed presentation and provided it had a sufficiently distinctive form, plus other nominative and/or figurative elements, the registration could even be admitted and remain in force.

The decision went that way.

But let's draw a parallel here. What if the trademark wasn't Chevette - with reference to the vehicle, whose trademark owned by General Motors has already been extinguished - but was FUSCA Drink. Could a company appropriate the term, albeit with a mixed and distinctive presentation, in a sector other than the automotive industry?

The answer is no.

The FUSCA trademark, owned by Volkswagen do Brasil, is a highly renowned trademark, protected by article 125 of the LPI. This means that the trademark, duly registered and with an annotation recognizing its high reputation, enjoys special protection, in all branches of activityIt is therefore forbidden to use it in any marketing segment, except by its owner.

Case 5053429-50.2022.4.02.5101

Intellectual Property | CPDMA Team

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