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Infringement Found for Football Teams’ Facemasks  

by Gustavo Fróes

Published: August, 2021

Submission: September, 2021

 



The manufacturer of the official facemask for the Brazilian Football Confederation filed a court action against an e-commerce company, accusing it of offering similar items allegedly manufactured by third parties.


The manufacturer of the official facemask for the men’s and women’s teams of the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) filed a court action against an e-commerce company, accusing it of offering similar items allegedly manufactured by third parties.

 

The manufacturer is a company from the State of Rio Grande do Sul, and the case is being tried in legal secrecy, the reason for which has not been disclosed.

 

In the action filed, the judge of the Business Court of Novo Hamburgo, State of Rio Grande do Sul, in May 2021, granted the requested injunction to prevent the defendant, a former distributor of the plaintiff, from manufacturing or marketing masks similar to those of the plaintiff, with the same trade dress, under the penalty of a daily fine.

 

In his decision, which is subject to appeal, the judge “affirms that the protection of trademarks is not only intended to ensure merely individual rights or interests of the owner.” The main objective, he adds, is to “protect those who buy products or services, granting subsidies to know the origin and quality of the product or service, preventing the illegal diversion of clientele and the practice of parasitic economic benefit.”

 

The decision prohibits the defendant from selling protective facemasks that contain the trademarks or expressions used by the plaintiff and from imitating the trade dress and distinctive signs of the plaintiff’s products in third-party products.

 

In addition, the defendant must make known all domain names that it owns in Brazil or abroad formed by the plaintiff’s trademarks. It must also disclose the names of the companies that have been manufacturing and marketing facemasks similar to those of the plaintiff, which likewise should discontinue the manufacture and sale of such products.

 

Author’s Insight

 

The decision highlighted the importance of protecting the rights of consumers—a guarantee provided for in the Brazilian Federal Constitution—who cannot be misled as to the origin of the products and/or services offered in the consumer market.

 

Although every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of this article, readers are urged to check independently on matters of specific concern or interest. Law & Practice updates are published without comment from INTA except where it has taken an official position.

 



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