Weissbach – In the case of the copied design “Sonoma Oak” and the legal dispute with the Polish seller, another round starts with good news for Hornschuch: the 26th Chamber for Commercial Matters of the District Court of Warsaw once again decided in favor of the Weissbach surface specialists. Hornschuch received an interim injunction based on the copyright to the design. The court prohibited the now well-known Polish seller from offering, distributing, or importing furniture film with the design “Sonoma Oak”, effective immediately. In addition, it was decreed that any warehouse stocks still in existence would be seized.
Officer of the court pays a visit to the design copycat
The interim injunction was served to the Polish company on February 4, 2014 by the officer of the court. On this occasion, the rights resulting from the decision of the court were asserted and executed in two warehouses in the presence of the attorneys of Hornschuch. 39 rolls with 200 running meters of furniture film each with the design “Sonoma Oak” in the color Truffle, meaning a total of 7,800 running meters of goods with the copied design were found and immediately seized on the premises.
Principle proceedings are pending
In matter of Hornschuch versus the Polish design copycat, the principle proceedings, which are currently underway, are pending. If Hornschuch wins, the marketing of the films in question with the design “Sonoma Oak” by the Polish seller would be permanently prohibited, meaning up to 50 years after the death of the film design copyright holder.
Product piracy is no trivial offense – especially not if it involves one of the most successful furniture film designs in recent years. At the end of May 2013, Hornschuch at Cologne interzum trade fair took off the gloves and successfully took action against the copycat of its design “Sonoma Oak”, which is used on furniture film. Due to an interim injunction based on a non-registered community design, the Polish seller was prohibited any commerce with the copy and its marketing until October 6, 2013. This decision was in effect in and for the area of the entire EU. The parallel principle proceedings are still pending. Immediately after this, the police confiscated goods and marketing material from the booth of the seller as a seizure measure in parallel German criminal proceedings. 2 days after the seizure at the trade fair, warehouses of the seller were searched on the basis of the interim injunction and several thousand running meters of goods with the copied design were seized.
A temporary suspension of the interim injunction that was obtained by the opposing party was reversed by the Warsaw Appellate Court in its decision from August 6, 2013 and the interim injunction was reinstated. The Appellate Court expressly stated that the design “Sonoma Oak” differs sufficiently from other wood designs to constitute a unique innovation. The effectiveness of the community design was thus confirmed.
Hornschuch has the original
Hornschuch fundamentally advises its customers not to purchase the design from doubtful sources. Lothar Machule, Chief Sales Officer, states: “In order to ensure that the product is not a copy, we simply recommend ordering our skai® Sonoma Oak. Then, nothing can happen. The successful design is available in all colors off the shelf. Thus, customers can be sure that they utilize the original with all premium characteristics, which are typical for our skai® furniture film.”
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