Trademark Law – April 1, 2020 – Invalidity and revocation proceedings before the French Trademark Office (INPI)

In France, the transposition of the Trademark EU Directive has brought about profound changes in the trademark provisions, as well as in the procedural aspects. Indeed, in order to modernize and improve the performance of trademark protection systems, new administrative proceedings for the invalidity and revocation of trademarks before the INPI have been introduced, as of April 1, 2020.

Those proceedings, which until then were the exclusive competence of the judicial courts, are now simpler, faster and less expensive.

As of April 1, 2020, the INPI becomes the sole competent body to rule on applications for invalidity or revocation of trademarks, when they are filed as a main cause of action.

Counterclaims for revocation or invalidity of a trademark, as well as applications for invalidation of a design right, personality right or copyright on the basis of a principal claim, remain the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of law.

As a result of these proceedings, trademarks will now be more vulnerable to revocation or invalidity. These new proceedings will be undoubtedly used as negotiating leverage in trademark conflicts.

For more information or in case of further questions regarding the possibility to introduce such proceedings, please do not hesitate to contact us.