This chapter briefly covers the legal basis, the composition, the nature, the review function and the filter function of the Boards of Appeal.
Alexander von Mühlendahl
The appearance of “shapes” falls under the definition of both trademarks and designs. Thus, the same object – the same shape – may qualify for trademark protection and for design protection. The parallel existence of trademark protection and design protection for shapes is the basis for this chapter. In a first part, the chapter provides a comparison between trademark protection and design protection for shapes, and in the second part it deals with conflicts between shape trademarks and designs, all of this from the perspective of the legal situation in the European Union. Overall, due to the fundamentally far-reaching parallelism of trademark and design protection for two-dimensional and three-dimensional signs, it is to be expected that the “need to know” the similarities and the differences between trademark law and design law and the rules governing conflicts between trademarks and designs conflicts will increase.