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Updates from an international team of correspondents who report on recent developments in IP law and practice in their home jurisdictions, as well as strategic issues and those relating to finance, dealmaking and valuation.
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New 27 SEPTEMBER 2023Start-ups can gain design protection faster with new accelerated examination programme
TIPO’s new pilot programme allows certain applicants to swiftly secure protection for their design patents, facilitates rapid responses to counterfeit designs and assists award winners and start-ups to obtain patent rights.
20 SEPTEMBER 2023Apple, Alibaba and Uni-President Enterprise among top filers for green marks in Taiwan
Taiwan’s IP office has released a report analysing the number of green trademark applications filed in the past 10 years. It also reveals that the majority of green-mark strategies are based on energy saving, pollution control and energy products.
02 AUGUST 2023IP court provides much-needed clarity on distinction between novelty and fictitious novelty
A court ruling has confirmed that the criteria for fictitious novelty follows the ‘expanded novelty’ model and proves the court’s ability to understand legal issues from an international perspective. Parties involved in related disputes should carefully analyse their cases to win a favourable decision on different legal grounds.
20 SEPTEMBER 2023New measures aim to refine corporate name dispute adjudication
While new SAMR measures now provide a clear framework for handling corporate name disputes and specify some punitive measures, they only address conflicts between corporate names – not increasingly prevalent disputes between these and prior trademarks.
13 SEPTEMBER 2023Plaintiffs’ subjective intentions underlined in infringement counterclaim ruling
The plaintiff in a trademark infringement claim was found to have weaponised the suit to disrupt its rival’s business operations. The decision shows that the courts are aiming to draw clearer distinctions between rights holders that legitimately believe that their marks are being infringed and those that use their rights in bad faith.
30 AUGUST 2023Supreme People’s Court’s new guiding opinion has critical implications for trademark owners
The Supreme People’s Court has agreed to hear more retrial cases, which is good news for trademark owners. Until now, the vast majority of litigation in this area was initiated at the basic level; the Supreme People’s Court was out of reach for most infringement cases.
06 SEPTEMBER 2023Delhi High Court clarifies scope of product-by-process claims in landmark pharma ruling
In a first-of-its-kind judgment, the Delhi High Court has refused to grant an interim injunction against the defendants, stating that their process did not infringe the plaintiff’s patent that had constituted a ‘product-by-process’ claim. The patent community is hoping for a more detailed order after the trial, as this will provide much-needed clarity on the scope of product-by-process claims.
23 AUGUST 2023Film dispute highlights that India must reconsider its approach to posthumous personality rights rules
There is a distinct lack of global harmonisation when it comes to the regulation of posthumous personality rights, which are primarily governed by case law across different jurisdictions. Against this backdrop, it is crucial that India considers introducing clear legislation to protect not only personality but also privacy rights as the value and exploitation of celebrity continues to grow.
16 AUGUST 2023PepsiCo’s potato variety loses protection following Delhi High Court ruling
With incorrect information newly exposed, PepsiCo warns against a casual approach towards procedural compliance as this can lead to revocation of registration. The plant variety protection case emphasises how crucial it is to pay close attention to all requirements when applying for IP rights.
16 AUGUST 2023The winners and losers of RIS implementation: an IP management perspective
RIS poses a financial threat to equipment vendors whose technology will become obsolete – these firms should thus assess the strength of their intellectual property as an urgent priority to position themselves for the market ramp-up. On the other hand, RIS stands to benefit many, including telecom service providers, consumers, vendors with enabling technology and SEP owners.
02 AUGUST 2023Who is who: key players in the global RIS patent landscape
RIS has received attention from a diverse number of players working towards creating SEP portfolios. As the technology progresses and becomes more sophisticated and with the standardisation process underway, an acceleration of patent filings in the coming years is very likely.
26 JULY 2023Global standardisation efforts well underway for pivotal RIS technology
RIS is a cutting-edge technology that aims to bridge the gap between 5G and 6G. As ETSI and 3GPP progress in efforts towards standardisation there are key IP management lessons for those hoping to build an effective portfolio strategy in this large and complex area.
05 JULY 2023UPC already a hit with patentees in Germany
The majority of filings so far have been in Germany, establishing Munich as a key destination. The number of international disputes is also expected to surge as English is introduced as a language option for proceedings.
08 MARCH 2023Regional courts unmoved by new disproportionality amendment to the German Patent Act
In what can be seen as a relief for patent holders, the new disproportionality exception for the enforcement of patent injunctions has left the German district courts' strict approach to injunctions unchanged.
22 FEBRUARY 2023CJEU ruling on preliminary injunctions sets regional courts on different paths
Patent litigators in Germany are feeling the effects of Phoenix Contact. While it was widely anticipated that German courts might alter their jurisprudence as a result, Düsseldorf and Munich’s regional courts are taking noticeably diverging approaches now that the first decisions on the matter have been published.
14 JUNE 2023European patent owners must publish Turkish translation of claims to claim compensation
A fresh case analysis sheds light on the need for European patent owners to publish the Turkish translation of the claims in order to claim compensation for damages suffered over a certain time period, without waiting for the EPO to grant or reject the application.
29 MARCH 2023How the UPC will likely affect invalidation proceedings in Turkey
While Turkey is not a UPC member state, the UPC’s lack of case law means that it will rely on EPO jurisprudence – a crucial element of Turkish judicial proceedings. It is thus highly likely that UPC proceedings and EPO evaluations will have a big impact on one another.
25 JANUARY 2023What the plausibility requirement means for Turkish IP law
The heavily debated concept of plausibility is quickly gaining prominence in invalidity proceedings. While it remains to be seen how the EPO will cement the concept into case law, several key existing cases present a number of conflicting arguments on the issue.
14 JUNE 2023Illinois trade secret dispute proceeds on theory of inevitable disclosure
In theory, parties can seek relief for trade secret misappropriation before it even happens. When faced with possible misappropriation, trade secret owners should carefully review applicable NDAs and consider pleading both misappropriation and threatened misappropriation, and building a substantial, detailed evidence record.
12 APRIL 2023Statute of limitations is a key issue in Delaware trade secret dispute
The ongoing Illumina case highlights three valuable lessons for trade secret owners in the United States: monitor former employees’ patent filings, be cognisant of the applicable statute of limitations, and carefully plead any facts that are available to support its tolling.
31 MAY 2023Grana Padano ruling raises fresh questions about PDO enforcement
The Court of Turin has issued a decision involving the Italian cheese Grana Padano, deeming the term ‘grana’ to be generic. This ruling directly contrasts an earlier Court of Venice decision on the same issue, indicating that there is a lack of harmonisation surrounding applications of protected designation of origins.
26 APRIL 2023New nullity proceedings good news for trademark budgets in Italy
Italy’s IP office has launched new proceedings for determining nullity and revocation with the aim of providing a streamlined and significantly cheaper alternative to legal proceedings.
19 APRIL 2023Italian parliament flares up over proposed UPC relocation
After a rocky start to Italy’s relationship with the UPC, the suggestion that the London division be moved to Milan has sparked strong opposition from Italian IP experts and members of parliament due to disagreements over the division’s competence.
26 APRIL 2023Starbucks success proves that brand vision is a critical intangible asset
A company’s brand can be one of its most valuable intangible assets and neglecting it in pursuit of scale can be extremely damaging. In this regard, business owners can learn important lessons from Starbucks – one of the great business success stories in the world.
08 MARCH 2023Using intangible assets to super charge business valuations
Value can be hidden in the many years of effort, millions of dollars of investment capital and fine-tuned market strategies, which all contribute to driving long-term business success and scaling up a company’s overall worth. It is thus crucial to find a way to reflect this on a company’s balance sheet.
15 FEBRUARY 2023What college football can teach SPAC sponsors
SPACs can learn much from Coach Saban’s so-called ‘seven-second process’, reshaping it into a unique method to keep investors excited about target businesses and their intangible assets during the dreaded transfer portal period.
08 FEBRUARY 2023Chief IP strategy officer sheds light on ZTE’s SEP portfolio management strategy
In an exclusive interview with Tim Pohlmann, Mang Zhu offers some insights into how she built one of the world’s largest 5G portfolios and, in the process, married key R&D goals with critical standards development work.
25 JANUARY 2023Auto industry demands a fresh SEP/FRAND focus in 2023
Power in the OEM space is shifting, while 2023 promises even greater numbers of standards implemented in vehicles. IP professionals, as well as directors in standards development, should bear several key considerations in mind as we settle into the new year.
18 JANUARY 2023A year in review: key SEP/FRAND discussions in 2022
SEP/FRAND discussions dominated conferences, webinars and symposiums over 2022. This two-part review examines the key takeaways from these conversations, with a special focus on industries where standards subject to SEPs are implemented.
13 APRIL 2022Extrajudicial admissions: can everything you say be used against you?
In Belgium, no specific provisions exist regarding the admissibility of extrajudicial admissions in court proceedings relating to patents. However, case law shows that the courts will take extrajudicial admissions into account and that it can be difficult for parties to take back such statements.
06 APRIL 2022How to avoid language barriers when filing patent applications in Belgium
Belgium has a complex institutional system in which the use of official languages is sometimes at the heart of public debate. While the Laws on the Use of Languages in Administrative Matters still play an important role in the lives of Belgians, what are the legal consequences of these laws for Belgian patent applications?
30 MARCH 2022Measures to enforce Belgian patent rights in court
Civil proceedings can be a formidable option for patent owners to uphold their rights. A range of options, all of which have the goal of matching the damages and the compensation for a rights holder with an infringed patent, means that there is plenty to consider when developing an IP strategy for Belgium.
16 MARCH 2022Supreme Court ruling on remuneration for employee inventions creates more uncertainty
A Supreme Court judgment opens the door to employee claims for additional remuneration against entrepreneurs who exploit their inventions – irrespective of whether a patent was granted. However, it also contradicts previous case law, making the situation less clear than ever
12 JANUARY 2022Supreme Court dispels doubts about statute of limitations for claims arising from industrial property infringements
A fresh ruling involving the systematic infringement of an EU trademark appears to have ended the debate on continuous infringement in Poland – and could also have big implications for patent holders.
27 OCTOBER 2021IP litigation in Poland is now (almost) completely remote
Remote hearings have become a mainstay in Polish litigation. A rundown of the current rules on IP litigation and how cases are being heard in the common courts, administrative courts, Polish Patent Office and at the Supreme Court provides an invaluable snapshot of the current system.
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