Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
9 June 2003
Appointed Person
Mr David Kitchin QC
03, 42
Michael Evangelus Clarke (trading as Michael Van Clarke)
Nicholas Andrew Clarke, Lesley Anne Gale Clarke & Kasmare Limited
Sections 3(6), 5(2)(b) & 5(4)(a)


Section 3(6) - Appeal dismissed

Section 5(2)(b) - Appeal dismissed

Section 5(4)(a) - Appeal dismissed

Points Of Interest

  • 1. See also Hearing Officer’s decision dated 12 November 2002 (BL O/460/02)


This was an appeal from the Hearing Officer’s decision of 12 November 2002 (BL O/460/02).

The Hearing Officer had rejected the opposition on all three grounds raised. In particular he decided that Michael Van Clarke identified the applicant (given name Michael Evangelus Clarke) but for the avoidance of doubt allowed the application to be amended to show his proper name. As regards the grounds under Sections 5(2)(b) and 5(4)(a) the Hearing Officer concluded that the respective names NICKY CLARKE and MICHAEL VAN CLARKE were not confusingly similar since Clark was a common surname and no evidence had been filed by the opponents to show that they had a separate and distinct reputation in the CLARKE element of their mark.

The opponents appealed to the Appointed Person under all three grounds, claiming that the applicant should not have been allowed to amend his application, and that the Hearing Officer had failed to have sufficient regard to the distinctive nature fo the element CLARKE in the opponents’ mark and had attached undue weight to the fact that it was a surname. The Appointed Person rejected the opponents’ appeal under all three grounds. He was satisfied that the name Michael Van Clarke clearly identified the applicant and the Hearing Officer was within his right to allow the applicant to amend the application form; he was also satisfied with the Hearing Officer’s reasoning in rejecting the opposition under Sections 5(2)(b) & 5(4)(a) and fully supported his decision. Appeal dismissed.

Full decision O/154/03 PDF document27Kb