Trade Mark – Whole, Not Parts of Whole, is What Matters

Posted: 23rd May 2011

The High Court has confirmed that a trade mark refers to the general impression given by the mark, not to the details of the mark and this can include auditory and conceptual factors as well as purely visual ones.
The important issue is whether the average consumer would be misled bearing in mind that the mark is perceived as a whole, not by its individual parts.
Merely creating a mark that is subtly different from a trade mark may well be insufficient to prevent an action for violation of the trade mark or ‘passing off’ (deriving an economic benefit from it) if the overall impression is similar. For advice on all trade mark and other intellectual property matters, contact us.