On 1 February 2018, the General Court rendered a judgment in case T-105/16 cancelling a decision by the EUIPO’s Board of Appeals in invalidity proceedings initiated by Philip Morris (hereinafter, PMI), and ordering the Board of the EUIPO to rule again on the conflict. The Court ordered the Board to take into full account the probative value of the evidence that the latter had previously disregarded with the argument that it had been submitted for the first time during appeal proceedings and was consequently inadmissible. The Court ruled that article 76 EUTMR and Rule 50(2) EUTMIR do not allow for late evidence when it is not supplementary, but admitted the appeal based on the application of general principles of the law and, in particular, sound administration. The Court considered that there were sufficient grounds for an exception to the applicable legal provisions of the EUTMR and the EUTMIR in this case. The EUIPO and the intervener were ordered to bear the costs. This decision is welcome news after lengthy proceedings that began several years ago.
Laura Alonso and Alicia Martín of the Madrid office have represented Philip Morris since the filing of the appeal before the EUIPO Board of Appeals and before the General Court.
The judgment can be found here: http://bit.ly/2DZGjFk