Latest updates

House of Lords European Committee publishes report on energy security post-Brexit
CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • United Kingdom
  • February 19 2018

The House of Lords European Committee has published its report on energy security in the United Kingdom following its withdrawal from the European Union. Key among the report's conclusions is that investors require certainty as to the future of UK energy policy. The report also recommends that any change in arrangements should be accompanied by a transition period that ensures consumers are protected while businesses adjust their working practices, contracts and systems.

Commercial court upholds Nestlé's infringement action of its patents relating to Nescafé Dolce Gusto capsules
Grau & Angulo
  • Intellectual Property
  • Spain
  • February 19 2018

In January 2016 Nestlé filed a patent infringement action with a preliminary injunction motion against Fast Eurocafé, which had imported, offered and sold capsules for a beverage compatible with Nestlé's well-known Nescafé Dolce Gusto system. Last month, Barcelona Commercial Court Number 5 upheld Nestlé's patent infringement action against Fast Eurocafé, declaring that claims must be interpreted according to their descriptions.

Unauthorised barcode on genuine trademarked products is forgery under Criminal Code
Lee and Li Attorneys at Law
  • Intellectual Property
  • Taiwan
  • February 19 2018

Unauthorised trademarks and barcodes are often used on counterfeit products. However, it remains an issue as to whether the unauthorised use of a barcode violates any laws or regulations. Recently, the Supreme Court and IP Court, among others, have been reviewing the relevant issues and believe that unauthorised use of barcodes should constitute forgery under the Criminal Code.

Equity part of your company's compensation plan? Don't forget about HSR
Cooley LLP
  • Company & Commercial
  • USA
  • February 19 2018

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued its annual inflation-adjusted thresholds for determining whether an acquisition of voting securities requires prior notification under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act. If any person or entity will hold voting shares that exceed the set amount as a result of an acquisition, all parties must submit a filing and observe a mandatory waiting period before acquiring the shares. The FTC also revised the potential maximum penalty for violations of the act.

Court sanctions transformation of registered trademark into infringing trademark
Wanhuida Peksung
  • Intellectual Property
  • China
  • February 19 2018

The Zhongshan Intermediate Court has ruled that a trademark owner and his company must bear joint and several liability for the compensation of Rmb3 million after the distinctive element of their registered trademark was subtly modified in practice to appear visually similar to the trademark 3M. The case shows the courts' determination to penalise trademark infringement, particularly where a defendant is reluctant to disclose its accounts.

Door closes on out-of-time objections under Section 220(2.1)
Thorsteinssons LLP
  • Corporate Tax
  • Canada
  • February 16 2018

The Federal Court of Appeal has held that the minister of national revenue has no discretion to admit a taxpayer into the objections regime under Section 220(2.1) of the Income Tax Act. Applying the implied exception rule of statutory interpretation, the court chose an interpretation that gave effect to more specific provisions (the objections regime), and held that taxpayers must comply with the strict time limits set out in the act.

Federal Reserve revises FR Y-7 and responds to questions on enhanced prudential standards for FBOs
Sidley Austin LLP
  • Banking
  • USA
  • February 16 2018

The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System has announced revisions to the Annual Report of Foreign Banking Organisations (FR Y-7) which will enable foreign banking organisations (FBOs) to certify their compliance with US risk committee and home country capital stress testing requirements under Regulation YY. The FR Y-7 is an annual report submitted by qualifying FBOs to provide financial, organisational, shareholder and managerial information to the board.

Negative interest on existing cash deposits imposed by change in terms and conditions unlawful
Herbert Smith Freehills Germany LLP
  • Banking
  • Germany
  • February 16 2018

The Tubingen Regional Court recently held that negative interest on a consumer's existing cash deposits imposed by a German bank by unilaterally changing the bank's general terms and conditions was unlawful. According to the court, the defendant bank violated the rules of the general terms and conditions regime because it did not differentiate between existing deposits and newly deposited cash.

Pitfalls to avoid when buying property in Cyprus
  • Real Estate
  • Cyprus
  • February 16 2018

Purchasing property in Cyprus can involve a number of pitfalls. Potential purchasers are advised to exercise extreme caution when buying property, especially if the title deed is not readily available, which is a common scenario when purchasing new property in Cyprus. Above all, it is paramount to obtain independent legal advice from a competent lawyer. A good lawyer should ensure that purchasers are protected from these potential problems.

Only arbitrator has locus standi before court regarding extension of arbitration procedure
George Z Georgiou & Associates LLC
  • Arbitration & ADR
  • Cyprus
  • February 15 2018

The Nicosia District Court recently issued an order which referred a dispute to arbitration. The order stipulated that the arbitrator should deliver a final decision within nine months. One of the parties applied to the court for an extension of the arbitration procedure. The court rejected the application on the ground that only the arbitrator had the right to apply for such an extension.

Probate for residents: what you need to know
Ogier
  • Private Client & Offshore Services
  • Jersey
  • February 15 2018

Many people do not realise what is involved in administering a person's estate until they have to do it themselves and they encounter a minefield of previously unknown terminology and complex legal procedures. For example, in Jersey, 'probate' is the term used for both the grant of probate itself and the process of applying for the right to deal with the estate of someone who has passed away.

Appeal court refuses challenge to international arbitral award
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
  • Arbitration & ADR
  • Canada
  • February 15 2018

A recent Ontario Court of Appeal decision has affirmed the favourable Canadian approach to the enforcement of international arbitration awards under the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law Model Law. The court of appeal's restraint when asked to set aside and refuse to enforce an international arbitral award is consistent with recent cases, which have upheld the narrow circumstances in which courts can do so.

Legislative changes to look out for in 2018: a Q&A
Ogier
  • Private Client & Offshore Services
  • Jersey
  • February 15 2018

The Capacity and Self-Determination (Jersey) Law 2016, due to come into effect in April 2018, will be a long overdue update to the old customary laws. This new law will give people the opportunity, while they still have capacity, to make decisions regarding their financial and personal affairs and welfare which will take effect should they lose capacity. There are also likely to be amendments to the Wills and Succession (Jersey) Law 1993, which was the subject of an independent report in 2015.

Ministry of Finance restructures advocacy agency in order to promote competitiveness
BMA Barbosa Müssnich Aragão
  • Competition & Antitrust
  • Brazil
  • February 15 2018

The Ministry of Finance recently issued Decree 9,299/2018, which partially changed the structure of the Brazilian Competition Policy System (BCPS). The BCPS undertakes three main activities: preventive control, repressive control and competition advocacy. The restructuring focuses on the promotion of competition advocacy in the country.

Court avoids decision on per se illegality of restrictions of competition by object
CMS
  • Competition & Antitrust
  • Germany
  • February 15 2018

A recent Celle Regional Court decision on a clear resale price maintenance case has been heavily debated because the court held that restrictions of competition by object can be compatible with Article 101(1) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union if they have no potentially significant effects on competition. The Federal Supreme Court has since overruled the decision, leaving it open as to whether the potential effects on competition must be considered in such cases.

Possibility of obtaining preliminary attachment before filing or during enforcement lawsuit
Kolcuoğlu Demirkan Koçaklı Attorneys at Law
  • Arbitration & ADR
  • Turkey
  • February 15 2018

In 2015 the 15th Chamber of the Court of Appeals held that courts cannot grant a preliminary attachment on the ground of a foreign court judgment, unless this judgment had been enforced in Turkey. The court's reasoning was that foreign court judgments and foreign arbitral awards can be executed in Turkey only if and when they are enforced in Turkey. However, a dissenting opinion in this decision stated that courts can grant a preliminary injunction before an enforcement decision has been finalised.

Mediation Act 2017
  • Arbitration & ADR
  • Ireland
  • February 15 2018

The Mediation Act 2017 recently entered into force. The act's objective is to promote mediation as an attractive alternative to court proceedings, in terms of time, cost, resources and the avoidance of acrimony. Although mediation may not be suitable for all disputes, the act provides a platform for parties to resolve their difficulties without commencing litigation where appropriate (albeit certain classes of case are excluded from its scope).

Takeover Panel introduces new rules on asset sales
Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
  • Corporate Finance/M&A
  • United Kingdom
  • February 14 2018

The Takeover Panel recently published Response Statement 2017/1 to its July 2017 consultation on the sale of a target's assets in competition with a takeover offer and related matters. The amendments to the Takeover Code set out in the response statement took effect on January 8 2018 and include measures to prevent a bidder from circumventing the application of the Takeover Code by purchasing a target's significant assets and a target's board from taking any action which may result in an offer being frustrated.

Ontario Bill 160 receives royal assent
Smart & Biggar/Fetherstonhaugh
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • Canada
  • February 14 2018

Ontario Bill 160, the Strengthening Quality and Accountability for Patients Act 2017, enacts or amends 10 statutes, including the Health Sector Payment Transparency Act 2017. The act will require payors – including manufacturers of pharmaceutical or medical devices – to report financial relationships with healthcare professionals and organisations, as well as other prescribed recipients.

What the International Arbitration Act means for maritime law
Bowmans
  • Shipping & Transport
  • South Africa
  • February 14 2018

The recent promulgation of the International Arbitration Act gave the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration the force of law in South Africa. Given the cross-border nature of shipping disputes, the act promises to enhance ​the attraction of what is already a litigation-friendly jurisdiction.

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