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Is the Applied-for Trademark Named as a Patented Chemical Deemed Misleading or Deceptive?
(Ngày đăng: 2022-10-10)

Is the Applied-for Trademark Named

as a Patented Chemical Deemed Misleading or Deceptive?


 Attorney Nguyen Khanh Linh – Bross & Partners

Email: linh.nguyen@bross.vnvinh@bross.vn


Applied-for Mark

Picture of Advertisement





Class 05: Boswellia herbal extracts, herbal nutritional supplements, vitamin supplements, etc.


A picture containing text, sweet, honeyDescription automatically generated


Is “5-Loxin” Deceptive or Deceptively Misdescriptive?


The IP Law as well as other countries’ trademark laws will often refuse protection of applied-for marks that are misleading or deceptive.[1] For example, the VNIPO refused an applied-for trademark for registration of "5-LOXIN" used for Boswellia herbal extracts, herbal nutritional supplements, etc. in class 05 stating that “5-LOXIN” is a patented chemical formulation in the United States, so it is descriptive if it contains the ingredient “5-LOXIN” or misleading (deceptive) in the opposite case in violation with Article 73.5 and Article 74.2.c of the IP Law


How to Overcome Deceptiveness or Misdescriptiveness Refusal?


Inherent distinctiveness of a trademark under Articles 73.5 and 74.2.c of the IP Law nowhere mentions that an applied-for mark containing the name of patented chemical formula is descriptive, misleading or deceptive to consumers. In addition, the VNIPO's refusal does not specify which information source and where it relies on to verify that "5-LOXIN" is a patented chemical formula in the US.


Representing the applicant, a complaint submitted by Bross & Partners focused on 3 points:


First, 5-LOXIN is not a chemical formula covered by a US patent but a trademark protected in the United States. Specifically, the applicant himself has been granted protection by the USPTO for the marks 5-LOXIN in class 05, such as 5-LOXIN ADVANCE and 5-LOXIN under US Reg Nos. 4,597,994 and 3,807,044 respectively. Thus, the USPTO – the trademark office also determines registrability of a trademark with the 2-step standard as in Vietnam – concluded that 5-LOXIN has trademark function but not descriptive, deceptive, or deceptively misdescriptive to the public.


Second, 5-LOXIN functions as a trademark even if it is named in many patent specification in the United States. Even if 5-LOXIN appears in patent descriptions in the United States, eg. patent nos. 9,101,599; 8,197,865; 8,192,768 it does not mean that 5-LOXIN is not a trademark or lost its trademark function because in these patent descriptions the symbol indicating a registered trademark ® is always placed at upper right corner of the word 5-LOXIN. Furthermore, the US practice has shown that the USPTO accepts the inclusion of a trademark (brand name) or trade name in the description of an invention for the purpose of identifying the goods or products as long as its meaning is proven under an accompanying definition to accurately and completely describe the invention disclosed, or widely known by an average person in the relevant field.


Third, 5-LOXIN is clearly interpreted on Internet sources as a trademark and not a patented chemical formulation. Specifically, 5-LOXIN acts as a commercial indication, used as a guide to help consumers identify the commercial origin of herbal products. Information on the internet from various sources can confirm this, such as http://www.plthealth.com/products/5-loxin and http://www.5-loxin.com/ , LAILA NUTRACEUTICALS, the owner of a protected trademark in the United States, advertised a product bearing the trademark “5-Loxin” on its website with the sign ® representing a protected trademark.


With the above persuasive arguments, on May 6, 2016, the VNIPO agreed to withdraw the refusal, granted the complaint, and issued a trademark registration certificate no. 261895 in favor of the applicant.


Bross & Partners, an intellectual property company ranked First (Tier 1) by Legal 500 Asia Pacific, has experience in resolving complicated IP disputes including trademarks, copyrights, patents, plant varieties


Please contact: Vinh@bross.vn; mobile: 0903 287 057; Zalo: +84903287057; Skype: vinh.bross; Wechat: Vinhbross2603.


[1] See more “Beware of Possible Rejection as Applied-for Trademark is Deceptive or Deceptively Misdescriptive in the EUIPO, USPTO, CNIPA and VNIPO”: Beware of Possible Rejection as Applied-for Trademark is Deceptive or Deceptively Misdescriptive in the EUIPO, USPTO, CNIPA and VNIPO - Lexology



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