CATHOLIC METROPOLITAN CEMETERIES TRUST V BENDIGO CEMETERIES TRUST [2016] ATMO 30 (13 MAY 2016)

Bendigo Cemeteries Trust applied to register the trade mark FUNERAL SERVICES ALLIANCE CENTRAL VICTORIA in respect of a range of goods and services, including funeral and crematoria services. This application was accepted, but then opposed by Catholic Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust.

The opponent led evidence of its use and registration of various trade marks that contained or comprised the mark FUNERAL ALLIANCE SOLUTIONS in respect of the same goods and services as the application.

The Hearing Officer was satisfied that the opponent’s evidence was sufficient to conclude that the opponent held a reputation in relation to the FUNERAL ALLIANCE SOLUTIONS trade mark prior to the filing of the applicant’s mark.

On the issue of likely consumer deception or confusion, the Hearing Officer noted that the common terms ‘FUNERAL’ and ‘ALLIANCE’, as well as an ‘S-‘ prefixed term when used by competing parties within a relatively specialised marketplace would be likely to cause confusion. Accordingly, the section 60 ground was made out and the application refused.

To view the Office decision, click here.

This article is an extract from Spruson & Ferguson’s Asia-Pacific Regional Trade Mark Update. You can view the entire summary here.