Once registered, the trademark is nationwide protected. The scope of the IP protection is shown in the register. As a trademark owner, you can enforce your rights against younger, confusingly similar trademarks throughout Germany. In addition, you can take action against a younger EU trademark (a trademark valid in the European Union) if it is confusingly similar to your own trademark.
National trademark less easily challengeable
Compared to an EU trademark, a German trademark can be less easily challenged. An EU trademark is valid throughout the entire EU territory, but it is subject to the “all-or-none principle”. This means that if there is an absolute ground for refusal in just one of the 27 member states of the EU, the EU trademark cannot be registered. The same applies to the opposition proceedings. One confusingly similar, earlier trademark in one of the 27 EU member states is sufficient to bring down the entire EU trademark. Possible conflicts with earlier trademarks from all over the EU can hardly be predicted and assessed. An EU trademark is therefore more likely to be challenged by competitors.
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