Your lawyer for trademark law, copyright and competition law in Hamburg – Marco Bennek
As a specialist lawyer for intellectual property rights, I advise you on trademark law, design law, copyright law, and competition law. Competition is good – but it must be fair.
Particularly in Internet trade, many market participants often behave unfairly. Warnings are usually the means of choice for legal enforcement.
As the operator of an internet shop, you have received a warning notice or would like to issue a warning? With my many years of experience, I am the right lawyer for you!
(040) 32 55 32 28
Lawyer & specialist lawyer for industrial property rights
I started working as a lawyer in 2006 and have been advising clients in competition and trademark law for more than 10 years.
Since June 2015 I have been a specialist attorney for industrial property rights and since May 2013 a partner in the firm of HELMKE Attorneys at Law and Tax Advisors and Patent Attorneys.
I studied law in Hamburg, Madrid, and Wellington (New Zealand) and hold a Master of Laws (LL.M.).
Specialist lawyer for industrial property rights
I am particularly qualified as a specialist lawyer: in order to acquire the title, a lawyer must have worked for several years and have worked in a large number of cases. To obtain the title, he is obliged to regularly take part in further training.
Appointment allocation within 24 hours
In commercial legal protection, things sometimes have to go very quickly: deadlines must be met and rights must be secured quickly. I therefore give advice appointments within 24 hours.
Permanent availability by telephone
A legal dispute is unsafe. Important information sometimes has to be exchanged quickly. I have organized my law firm so that I can always be reached by phone. For this I provide an e-office.
I don’t leave my clients in the “legal darkness”. I explain the legal situation and the legal steps so that non-lawyers can fully understand the legal situation.
Membership in GRUR
I am a member of the German Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property and Copyright (GRUR). This is the largest and oldest association in Germany that deals with questions of industrial property protection and copyright.
Digital file management
I use digital filing. This way of working is client-friendly and efficient. Data security is my top priority.
Good accessibility of the office
My office is very easy to reach. It is located in the center of Hamburg, direct by the town hall.
Consulting in German, English, and Spanish
I speak English and Spanish fluently so that I can offer legal advice in these languages.
Warnings in competition law and trademark law
A warning letter is an informal letter in which the infringer is informed of his anti-competitive behavior. At the same time, he is requested to stop the conduct complained of and not to repeat it. In addition, he is to issue a cease-and-desist declaration within a short period of time, including a promise of contractual penalty.
He receives a threat that legal action will be taken after the deadline. In addition, he is ordered to pay the costs incurred by the warning to the warning officer.
A warning notice is an effective means of enforcing claims for injunctive relief in particular. This applies to both trademark law and competition law:
For example, trademark owners want to stop the trade with plagiarisms or prevent the sale of original branded products without authorization of the trademark owner.
Online retailers do not want a trader to disregard their legal obligations and gain a competitive advantage.
Consumer protection associations expect that consumers are not disadvantaged and not harmed.
As your specialist solicitor:
- I will help you to secure your rights quickly and efficiently by issuing a warning
- I formulate a cease-and-desist declaration in a legally secure manner and tailored to the individual case
- I check whether the warning notice received is abusive
- I amend the declaration of discontinuance of the other party in your interest (modified declaration of discontinuance)
File sharing warning
Anyone who exchanges film and music files or pictures illegally on the Internet must also expect a warning. However, it must always be checked individually whether a copyright infringement has actually occurred – and if so, by whom. This is because the owner of the Internet connection is not automatically responsible for copyright infringement and parents are not always necessarily liable for their underage children.
Warning by Waldorf Frommer
The law firm Waldorf Frommer sends out warning letters in large quantities to Internet users accusing them of copyright violations on file-sharing platforms. It represents well-known names in the music and film industry, including:
- Sony Music Entertainment Germany GmbH
- Warner Bros. Entertainment GmbH
- Tiberius Film Ltd
- Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment Ltd
- Universum Film Ltd.
- Universe Music Ltd
- Constantin Film Distribution GmbH
You should behave here in exactly the same way as recommended by me in the event of a warning. Do not be intimidated and take the time to see a lawyer.
Have you received a warning letter?
- Do not contact the other party without authorization
- Do not sign the attached cease-and-desist declaration unseen
- Do not try to adapt the cease and desist declaration yourself
- Do not pay the requested amount
- Please note the specified deadline
- Have the allegation checked
- Do not ignore the warning
Trademark application (national, EU, international)
A brand stands for the uniqueness of your company. It shapes the image and has a recognition value.
So the person who comes up with the idea should be the only one who is allowed to use his trademark in the course of business – of course without violating the rights of others.
I support you in the legally compliant trademark application by, among other things:
- Checking the protectability
- Create a list of goods and services
- Carry out a similarity search
- Perform a risk assessment
- Evaluate which property right (national, EU, international) is appropriate
Legally compliant online shop
Internet retailers must build their online store carefully.
Competitors, consumer protection associations and competition clubs are keeping a watchful eye on the compliance of businesses with the legal requirements – and there are some.
So that you are not threatened with a warning, I check whether your online shop contains all the necessary information. I create legally compliant:
- Cancellation policy
- General terms and conditions of business
Legal debt collection
Unpaid invoices from customers often endanger your own liquidity.
I will help you to minimize your outstanding accounts.
To this end, I take over the entire receivables management for you and also check whether a dunning procedure or even a lawsuit is appropriate.
Accompaniment of court proceedings in competition and copyright law
If a legal dispute arises in a competition or copyright dispute, I will accompany you during the entire process.
I know the peculiarities of different courts and the strategies of opposing parties.
Competition lawyer: Overview of my areas of practice
Competition law serves to protect competitors but also consumers and other market participants. It distinguishes between permissible (fair) and inadmissible (unfair) actions, i.e. those which promote or prohibit fair competition.
In this context, competition law requires above all that competitors and consumers mutually control compliance with these provisions and, if necessary, prosecute infringements. Legal tools of the trade are mainly warnings and interim injunctions, but also (injunction) actions.
As a specialist attorney for industrial property rights, I can assist you with my experience in all questions of competition law. My activities include the following fields of activity:
1. Defense of unjustified warnings
Anyone who has ever received a warning notice is usually unsettled. Often a look into the law or into the internet does not really help. In addition, there seems to be a whole industry of mass warning notices with the aim of prosecuting minor infringements and generating warning costs.
I check the legitimacy of the warning and design the appropriate defense strategy with you.
2. Prosecution of competition violations by your competitors
Is your competitor gaining an anticompetitive advantage? Now it is up to you to become active. The legislator has deliberately placed the prosecution of competition violations in the hands of the respective competitors, trade associations or consumer centers.
These are closer to the competition than the authorities or courts can be. Together with you, I will draw up a strategy for fair competition, draft a warning notice or apply for an injunction on your behalf.
3. Advice and design of advertising and marketing measures
Especially in highly competitive areas, an advertising measure should not only make sense from a marketing point of view, but also be legally secure. Nothing is more annoying than investing money, time and creativity in a measure and then receiving a warning because of it. My suggestion: Include a specialist lawyer for industrial property rights in your planning in good time.
I will create a risk profile for you, on the basis of which you can consciously decide for or against the specific advertisement. In this way, expensive warnings can be avoided.
4. Verification and legally compliant design of your internet presence
Cancellation policy, general terms, and conditions, imprint. With an Internet presence, there are many legal regulations to consider. All these formalities offer a target for potential warning letters. Here, too, you should seek advice in good time.
If even a warning notice is prevented by a legally compliant appearance, the consulting costs have already been amortized.
5. Representation in injunction or lawsuit proceedings
As a rule, disputes under competition law can be settled out of court by means of warnings or by issuing a declaration of discontinuance. If not, a preliminary injunction is usually the means of choice. Here I represent your interests nationwide. Regardless of whether you are sued by your competitor for injunctive relief or damages or intend to take legal action yourself.
Based on my experience, I can usually answer your competition law questions quickly and straightforwardly. Once the facts of the case have been clarified, I will work with you to develop a suitable attack or defence strategy or we will jointly design your advertisement.
So if you have received a warning, are considering placing an advertisement or if you are upset about the misconduct of your competitors, please call me for an initial assessment by telephone.
It goes without saying that I will point out possible risks to you before each mandate and explain possible procedural and legal costs. By agreeing on a written fee agreement you always have full cost control.
Picture source reference: © Enrico Mantegazza / panthermedia.net