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Case detail

B a c k

Directive article Article 5 2.
Article 6 1.
Article 6 1. (c)
Article 6 1. (f)
Article 6 2.
National ID 2-06-13546
Country Estonia Decision date 23/03/2008
Common name Decision type Court decision, first degree
Court Harju Maakohus (Tallinn) Plaintiff(s) AS Latvijas Balzams
Court translation Harju County Court (Tallinn) Defendant(s) OsaĆ¼hing Fontan RV
Subject misleading commercial practices
Keywords false informationmisleading commercial practicesproduct characteristicstrade mark

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Displaying in the representation of a trade mark medals and awards that were not actually awarded to the trademark's owner, misleads consumers.


The plaintiff had applied for the registration of the trade mark for a certain sparkling wine. The trade mark depicted several medals that were purportedly won by the plaintiff in competitions.

The defendant argued that the plaintiff had not in fact won one of the medals, so that the trade mark would mislead consumers. For this reason, according to the defendant, the trade mark could not be registered.

The court now had to decide whether the trade mark could be registered in light of the medal issue. 

Legal issue

Does the depiction of a medal in the representation of a trade mark constitute a misleading commercial practice when the medal was not actually won by the owner of the trade mark?


The court first reflected on the rights of the consumers in the Estonian Consumer Protection Act, and stated that the information given to consumers must be correct. Therefore, displaying false medals in the representation of a trade mark is a misleading commercial practice, as it causes (or is likely to cause) the consumer to take a transactional decision that he would not have taken otherwise.

The court also considered that giving false information in the representation of a trade mark is misleading advertising and thus prohibited under the Estonian Advertising Act.

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The plaintiff’s registration request was denied.

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