Hamilton Vs Hamilton: F1 superstar Lewis Hamilton loses legal battle with Hamilton watches

It all started in 2014 when Hamilton International AG, a Swiss watch company, filed a registration application for the "HAMILTON"trademark in classes 9 and 14.
44IP, the company that manages Lewis Hamilton's IP rights,filed an application for a declaration of invalidity on the grounds of bad faith and registration contrary to public policy. The invalidity action was rejected by the EUIPO.
The decision was appealed and the Board of Appeal issued, last October, an unfavorable decision for the pilot clarifying, in particular, that it is common ground that the cancellation applicant has the burden of proof for the facts establishing bad faith . It is commonly said that good faith is presumed until proven otherwise (23/05/2019, T-3/18 & T-4/18, ANN TAYLOR, EU:T:2019:357, § 34) but what is actually meant by this is that an applicant for an EUTM does not have to give legitimate reasons for the filing of an application or to justify his actions or omissions. Moreover, in the present proceedings, the EUTM proprietor has provided ample evidence that the mark ‘HAMILTON’ was in fact genuinely used by the EUTM proprietor for watches since 1892.
Also the argument relating to the IP rights of the racing driver ‘Lewis Hamilton’ fails. The Board Of Appeal states that a prior right to a name is not a right that could be the basis on the grounds invoked by the cancellation applicant and that "even the cancellation applicant explicitly accepted that the contested mark ‘HAMILTON’ had been used since 1892, i.e. even before the date of birth of ‘Lewis Hamilton’ as a natural person".
This time, therefore, Lewis Hamilton was beaten and for once he is not the winner of the challenge against time

11/20/2020 | Trade Mark