Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
10 October 2008
Hearing Officer
Mrs J Pike
HANSON PARTNERS & Heraldic Lion Device
12, 23, 24, 35, 36, 39, 41, 45
Hanson Partners Ltd
Ansons Herrenhaus KG
Section 5(2)(b)


Section 5(2)(b): Opposition failed.

Points Of Interest

  • The opponent’s mark was registered with a very wide specification in Class 35 (not now allowed) and the Hearing Officer considered whether or not to fully recognise the wide specification when making his decision. In the event she gave full recognition to the wide specification.


In these proceedings only Classes 24, 35 and 45 are being opposed. The opponent owns the mark ANSON’S registered in Class 35 in respect of “retail trade services”. Neither side filed evidence of use of their marks.

Under Section 5(2)(b) the Hearing Officer compared the applicant’s goods and services with the opponent’s services and, bearing in mind the width of the opponent’s specification, concluded that identical services were at issue in the respective Class 35 specifications; that similar services were at issue in respect of the applicant’s Class 45 specification and that similar goods and services were at issue in respect of the applicant’s Class 24 goods specification. As regards the respective marks the Hearing Officer accepted that there was some aural similarity but only a low level of visual similarity. Also both marks were likely to be seen as surnames and consumers are used to distinguishing between different surnames either as trade marks or in other walks of life. The Hearing Officer concluded that overall confusion between the respective marks was unlikely and that the opposition failed.

In its written submissions the opponent drew attention to the fact that it had successful opposed an application for the mark HANSON at OHIM. The Hearing Officer noted that that conflict involved identical goods in Classes 18 and 25 and the application was for the mark HANSON. She therefore did not find that decision persuasive in relation to these proceedings.

Full decision O/276/08 PDF document125Kb