Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
22 August 2003
Hearing Officer
Mr G Salthouse
39, 42
North British Trust Hotels Limited
EasyGroup IP Licensing Limited
Sections 5(2)(b); 5(3) & 5(4)(a)


Section 5(2)(b) - Opposition partially successful.

Section 5(3) - Opposition failed.

Section 5(4)(a) - Opposition failed.

Points Of Interest

  • 1. Stay of proceedings : invalidity proceedings; revocation proceedings; a tip-off danger is not a good reason to delay filing an invalidation action.
  • 2. Family of marks.
  • 3. Comparison of marks; EASYCOACH v EASYTRAIN, EASYBUS, EASYJET.


The opponent was proprietor of a number of 'EASY' marks.

The applicant sought to stay the proceedings pending the outcome of invalidity actions already filed, and revocation proceedings which would shortly be filed. The Hearing Officer rejected the applications for a stay.

Under Section 5(2)(b) the opponent's marks EASYJET, EASYTRAIN and EASYBUS were identified as providing their strongest case. No evidence of use was provided in respect of the marks EASYTRAIN and EASYBUS.

The Hearing Officer found no likelihood of confusion between the mark applied for and the opponen'’s marks EASYTRAIN and EASYJET. In the case of the marks EASYCOACH v EASYBUS, however, the Hearing Officer found a likelihood of confusion in respect of some of the services specified and the Section 5(2)(b) objection succeeded to that extent.

Under Section 5(3) the Hearing Officer found that the opponent had not shown that use of the applicant’s mark on dissimilar services would be detrimental to or take unfair advantage of the earlier mark EASYJET. This ground

Full decision O/259/03 PDF document264Kb