MOSCOW, August 29 - RAPSI, Dmitry Shchitov. The Moscow Commercial Court has postponed further hearings in the "Cristal" trademark case, the court told the Russian Legal Information Agency (RAPSI).

The court postponed hearings in order to allow for expert review, as requested by Louis Roederer Champagne, the "Cristal" trademark owner. The experts will determine whether the "Cristal" trademark is confusingly similar to a "Kristal" trademark owned by state-run Soyuzplodoimport. The experts are also expected to look into semantic similarities between the trademarks.

The Presidium of the Supreme Commercial Court on March 9 remanded the trademark case to the Moscow Commercial Court for its reconsideration.

Soyuzplodoimport has petitioned the court to invalidate the Federal Intellectual Property Agencys (Rospatent) decision of March 26, 2010. In this decision, Rospatent dismissed a Soyuzplodoimport petition seeking to invalidate the Cristal trademark legal protection in Russia.

Louis Roederer Champagne registered the international Cristal trademark in 1946. In 1994, the French company filed an application with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) for extending trademark protection to Russia. In 1995, the company filed a notice to Rospatent on this issue.

Rospatent has denied the registration rights for the Cristal trademark in Russia citing its similarity to the Kristal trademark that has been owned by Soyuzplodoimport since 1974.

However, in 2006, Rospatent reversed its earlier ruling and granted legal protection to the Cristal trademark in Russia. A report was published in 2008.
In 2008, Soyuzplodoimport filed a petition with Rospatent disputing the Cristal trademark registration.

Louis Roederer was founded in 1776 and is one of the oldest wine producers in the French province Champaign.