Proposal for changes to the Nice Classification was accepted

Nice ClassificationDuring the 25th Session of the Committee of Experts of the Nice Union held from 27 April to 1 May 2015 and attended by representatives of KC G&S Issues, the OHIM presented the Proposal for changes to the Class Headings and Explanatory Notes prepared by the CP1 Working Group.

The Nice Classification is the primary system used to classify goods and services for the purposes of the registration of marks. For much of the time since its first edition, the Classification has been available and used in printed form, usually referred to whilst adding the necessary information into a paper application; but times have changed. These days, trademark applications are increasingly e-filed, with classification advice available through an online alphabetical database. This evolution has changed the role performed by the class headings when terms are not found in the alphabetical list, requiring that they provide more decisive (and unambiguous) guidance. In this, some of the class headings fail. The proposal made aimed to improve the capacity of the Nice class headings to provide the guidance needed by today’s users. Specifically, the proposal aimed at bringing greater clarity and precision to 11 specific Nice Class Headings, and their explanatory notes in order to move towards producing a classification system that gives more directed and useful guidance to users and provides more accurate ‘general indications’ of the fields of goods and services in the respective class. The class headings concerned are those of classes 6, 14, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 24, 28 and 31. These class headings have seen references to “and goods made of these materials, not included in other classes”, and similar such wording removed from the class headings, among others, and instead more examples of the goods included, and not included, in those particular classes have been provided in the explanatory notes.

The proposal was the result of in-depth discussion and lengthy debates from Europe’s finest classification experts from IP offices and with input from representatives of the User Associations MARQUES and INTA.

The proposal was approved by the WIPO Nice Committee of Experts in its entirety on 29 April and the changes will enter into force in the 2016 version of the 10th edition of the Nice Classification on 1 January 2016.

Source: Alicante News