Common Communication on the General Indications of the Nice Class Headings

Maria Chetcuti-Cauchi | 17 May 2014

Ccmalta Default

The Intellectual Property Offices in the EU and EEA member states have come together to examine the interpretation and acceptability of the general indications in the Nice Class Headings.

Discussions have led to the release of the second Common Communication on the Interpretation of the ‘IP Translator’ which established that 11 of the 197 general indications of the Nice class headings lack the required clarity and precision in order to specify the scope of protection that they would give to the goods and services covered. Consequently, it has been established that these 11 general indications in the Nice Class Headings cannot be accepted for registration without further specification.

The Communication also came to the conclusion that in certain cases, a part of a general indication may be considered as sufficiently clear and precise if used on its own.

The hereunder list outlines the 11 general indications in the Nice Class Headings which are no longer acceptable for registration. The parts in bold refer to those parts of the general headings which in certain cases may be considered as sufficiently clear and precise if used on their own. However this does not include the parts “not included in other classes”.

1.     Cl. 6 – Goods of common metal not included in other classes;

2.     Cl. 7 – Machines and machine tools;

3.     Cl. 14Precious metals and their alloys and goods in precious metals or coated therewith, not included in other classes;

4.     Cl. 16Paper, cardboard and goods made from these materials [paper and cardboard], not included in other classes;

5.     Cl. 17Rubber, gutta-percha, gum, asbestos, mica and goods made from these materials [rubber, gutta-percha, gum, asbestos and mica] and not included in other classes;

6.     Cl. 18Leather and imitations of leather, and goods made of these materials [leather and imitations of leather] and not included in other classes;

7.     Cl. 20 – Goods (not included in other classes) of wood, cork, reed, cane, wicker, horn, bone, ivory, whalebone, shell, amber, mother-of-pearl, meerschaum and substitutes for all these materials, or of plastics;

8.     Cl. 37 – Repair;

9.     Cl. 37 – Installation services;

10.  Cl. 40 – Treatment of materials;

11.  Cl. 45 – Personal and social services rendered by others to meet the needs of individuals;

The policy shall not apply retroactively and has already been implemented by most participating states, including Malta which implemented the policy as from the 20th February 2014.



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