IP in the news - 21 July 2014

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Summary: Our regular update on developments in the world of IP, this week featuring the IPO's report on the Unified Patent Court, trade marking the layout of retail stores, and protecting the world cup.

Patents


An independent study has found that UK businesses are currently undecided about the benefits of the Unitary Patent and the Unified Patents Court. Two key factors will be the level of the fees and the detail of the Rules of Procedure, both of which are yet to be finalised.  See the report here: Exploring Perspectives of the Unified Patent Court and Unitary Patent Within the Business and Legal Communities.

Retail Stores and Trade marks


The ECJ has ruled that the layout of a retail store can be protected as a registered trade mark, in relation to Apple's attempt to protect its store design. This should mean that other layouts, such as bars and reception areas in hotels, could also be registered as trade marks if they were sufficiently distinctive.

Sport and Trade Marks


German Formula 1 driver Nico Rosberg's plan to celebrate Germany's football success by putting an image of the World Cup on his helmet was thwarted by FIFA who asserted their trade mark rights in the World Cup.

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