An Update on Shape Marks in Dutch Courts
The Dutch high court in Amsterdam recently added another chapter in the trademark conflict between Hauck and Stokke on the Tripp Trapp children’s chair in The Netherlands. Already back in 1998 Stokke registered the shape of the chair as a Benelux trademark. After a lot of litigation between 2000 and 2014, the Hight Court of The Netherlands referred the case back in 2015 to the high court of Amsterdam to assess whether the shape mark of the Tripp Trapp chair should be invalidated due to being the shape which results from the nature of the goods themselves and/or because the shape gives substantial value to the goods it is registered for. On February 4, 2019, the high court in Amsterdam finally gave their ruling, in which they concluded that there can be no trademark protection as the shape mark solely consists of the shape of a children’s chair. This is, in fact, a shape which results from the nature of the goods themselves, so no trademark protection for Stokke in Benelux.
Please see all documents we have on this case in our database by searching for Darts-ip ref. darts-056-335-G-nl-2.
On February 6, 2019, the Dutch court of The Hague ruled on the question whether the red sole of Louboutin is, in fact, a trademark by which Van Haren can be forbidden to use the same on their shoes. After nearly 4 years of proceedings, the matter came back to the court where it all started, and the court decided that the rulings of the European Court of Justice had given no reason to change their first ruling: the trademark of Louboutin is valid. There is no reason to forbid this particular shape as this shape mark does not consists “solely” of the shape itself. Read the full decision by searching for Darts-ip ref. darts-056-336-G-nl.
You can also use Darts-ip to search for other cases on position marks by selecting “Other type of TM” and use “position” as a description:
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