Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
20 June 2002
Hearing Officer
Dr W J Trott
41, 42
GI Group Plc
Punch Retail Limited
Sections 3(1)(b); 5(2)(b) & 5(4)(a)


Section 3(1)(b) - Opposition failed

Section 5(2)(b) - Opposition successful

Section 5(4)(a) - No formal finding

Points Of Interest

  • 1. Single letter marks.
  • 2. Comparison of the marks Q-BAR v MR Q’S.
  • 3. Comparison of the services.


The opposition, based on the opponents’ mark Mr. Q’s was confined to most of the services in Class 42; no objection was raised to the Class 41 specification or to ‘bodyguard and doorman services’ in Class 42. The case under Section 3(1)(b) was that the mark comprised a single letter, Q, with a word descriptive of the services. The Hearing Officer, however, eventually ruled that whilst it was not the most distinctive marks ever applied to the services at issue, it was strong enough to meet the requirements of Section 3(1)(b).

Under Section 5(2)(b), having compared the marks and the services still at issue, the Hearing Officer found that there was a likelihood of confusion, and that ground succeeded accordingly.

The Hearing Officer made no formal finding under Section 5(4)(a), but he stated his belief that the opponents would be successful under that head also.

Full decision O/251/02 PDF document51Kb