Garrigues receives the case of the year award in Portugal from Managing Intellectual Property for the IP lawsuit pitting Cofemel against G-Star Raw

Portugal - 

Garrigues takes the award for the second year running

Garrigues has obtained the case of the year award in Portugal for its advice in the lawsuit pitting the Dutch company G-Star Raw against the Portuguese company Cofemel Sociedade de Vestuario in a hard-hitting IP lawsuit, specifically for the fashion industry.

This seven-year lawsuit ended on January 15 when the Portuguese Supreme Court found in favor of Cofemel, which was advised by Garrigues throughout the entire process. The lawsuit started in 2013 when G-Star Raw filed a claim against the Portuguese company on the grounds that some designs of Cofemel’s clothing were similar to G-Star’s designs and that the latter were protected by copyright. The claim was finally dismissed by the Portuguese Supreme Court.

The ruling by the Portuguese court was preceded by a highly significant judgment by the CJEU, as it was the first ruling by the European court regarding whether clothing designs, apart from the protection afforded under industrial design legislation, are also protected by copyright and if so in which situations. In September 2019, the CJEU ruled that the designs analyzed did not meet the necessary originality standards to be able to be classified as “intellectual works” and therefore to be able to benefit from the protection afforded by copyright legislation.

With this award, Managing Intellectual Property recognizes the teamwork of Garrigues’ intellectual property team. The legal defense was led by João Miranda de Sousa, partner in charge of Garrigues Portugal, who coordinates the IP practice in Portugal. “We receive this award with satisfaction, but also with humility. It encourages us to continue to give our best in order to offer cutting-edge and valuable answers, with maximum efficiency, to our clients’ problems and needs”, explained João Miranda de Sousa.

For the second year running, the firm has been singled out by Managing Intellectual Property. In 2019, this international publication named Garrigues Portugal the Trademark Contentious Firm of the Year.