Latest updates

New ruling expands environmental organisations' rights in nature conservation procedures
Schoenherr
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • Austria
  • 12 April 2021

In 2020 the Higher Administrative Court issued an interesting ruling regarding the party status of environmental organisations (EOs). Until now, the scope of EOs' participation rights in Austrian nature conservation proceedings was unclear. The court's ruling clarifies that EOs' party status is to be interpreted broadly. For companies which plan on implementing projects, this ruling could create significant legal uncertainty.

Trademark infringement theory – innocent or infringing?
NAM & NAM
  • Intellectual Property
  • South Korea
  • 12 April 2021

Where an application for a trademark which is substantially similar to a prior registered trademark is successful, does the use of the later filed trademark constitute infringement of the prior registered trademark? This situation is not explicitly addressed by the Trademark Act, but the courts have traditionally held that it does not constitute infringement. However, a recent Supreme Court ruling overturned this convention, highlighting the importance of early filing in South Korea.

Role of patent data in innovation lifecycle: development stage
GEVERS
  • Intellectual Property
  • International
  • 12 April 2021

Patent-related data is a recognised source of information about technological innovation programmes and the patenting strategies of parties in a particular field. Parties often use data reporting tools (eg, mapping or landscaping) to provide an overview of a competitive activity. This article focuses on how parties can use patent data at the development stage of a product's innovation lifecycle.

PIB 2020 and ministerial consent for assignments, novations and changes of control
Streamsowers & Köhn
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • Nigeria
  • 12 April 2021

One of the unstated objectives of the Petroleum Industry Bill 2020 is to clarify the law and practice of ministerial consent for assignments of interest in upstream oil and gas licences and leases. This article addresses the extent to which it can be said that this objective has been achieved.

Online infringement: when is a platform 'targeted' at a territory?
Pinsent Masons
  • Intellectual Property
  • United Kingdom
  • 12 April 2021

Unsurprisingly, the combination of the COVID-19 pandemic and global lockdowns has resulted in increased consumer shopping online. To capture that increased demand, retailers have invested in both their website infrastructure and marketing budgets. Consumers now have no geographical limits on where they view and purchase goods. An unintended consequence of this is that it has shone a spotlight on the tension between trademarks which are territorial and online marketplaces which are not.

Taiwan-Japan patent file wrapper exchange piloted
Lee and Li Attorneys at Law
  • Intellectual Property
  • Taiwan
  • 12 April 2021

In 2018 the Taiwan-Japan Relations Association and the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association signed a memorandum of understanding on the exchange of patent file wrappers to facilitate the sharing of file histories and other relevant information sought by applicants and patent examiners between Taiwan and Japan. The Taiwan Intellectual Property Office recently announced the pilot of a shared platform for accessing patent examination documents.

Common terms in pharmaceutical trademarks
OMC Abogados & Consultores
  • Intellectual Property
  • Peru
  • 12 April 2021

Pharmaceutical trademarks often comprise a combination of elements (eg, prefixes, suffixes or commonly used words) that evoke the product's properties, active ingredients or therapeutic function. Any party may include commonly used terms in a trademark. However, to avoid the risk of confusion, pharmaceutical trademarks must include elements in addition to the common term to ensure that consumers can identify and distinguish the product's commercial origin.

Supreme People's Court promulgates opinions on copyright
Wanhuida Intellectual Property
  • Intellectual Property
  • China
  • 12 April 2021

Soon after the recent adoption of the third amendment to the Copyright Law, the Supreme People's Court promulgated the Opinions on Strengthening the Protection of Copyright and Copyright-Related Rights. The opinions aim to encourage the development of emerging industries and improve the quality and efficiency of copyright trials.

Mona Lisa or dog doo? Humour avoids trademark liability
Venable LLP
  • Intellectual Property
  • USA
  • 12 April 2021

Trademark holders often face the dilemma of whether and how to respond when their marks are used for comic effect, particularly when the humour is at their expense for another's commercial gain. Instinctively, trademark holders want to protect their marks, often with an aggressive legal response. However, that approach is not always wise and is now less likely to succeed, at least in one appellate circuit, following a recent case involving the well-known Jack Daniel's brand.

IP litigation and alternative dispute resolution options
Berggren Oy
  • Intellectual Property
  • Finland
  • 12 April 2021

In Finland, the validity of IP rights (except copyrights) is examined by the Finnish Patent and Trademark Office. The question of whether one party has infringed another party's valid IP rights may be addressed through litigation. A specialised IP court may be a good choice in certain circumstances. However, various alternative dispute resolution mechanisms are also available, depending on the IP right and the dispute in question.

No more chasing rainbows: advantages of black and white when filing Canadian trademark applications
Smart & Biggar
  • Intellectual Property
  • Canada
  • 12 April 2021

Some foreign brand owners may be surprised to learn that in Canada, when seeking to protect design (or figurative) marks, it is sometimes better to register marks in black and white in cases where the marks would normally be displayed in colour. Moreover, broader protection can typically be secured in Canada by registering design (or figurative) marks in black and white as opposed to including a colour claim.

Expansion of premises liability for construction owners
Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP
  • Projects, Construction & Infrastructure
  • USA
  • 12 April 2021

A property owner is generally liable for hazards on the property that injure others. On construction projects, this presents a significant risk for owners because there are multiple hazards present, and the owner, generally, has little control or knowledge of all the work being performed. Chapter 95 of the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code alleviates some of this risk by limiting a commercial property owner's liability for personal injury claims by contractors and subcontractors under specific circumstances.

Economic substance requirements: overview
Ogier
  • Corporate Tax
  • Cayman Islands
  • 09 April 2021

The International Tax Cooperation (Economic Substance) Act reflected the Cayman Islands' commitment to its obligations as a member of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development's global Base Erosion and Profit Shifting Inclusive Framework and corresponding EU requirements for no or nominal tax jurisdictions. This article summarises the key elements of the act and draws upon guidance issued by the Tax Information Authority.

Composition of active mass under TRLC
Augusta Abogados
  • Insolvency & Restructuring
  • Spain
  • 09 April 2021

The Consolidated Text of the Bankruptcy Law introduces the concept of the 'active mass' of a bankruptcy, which constitutes all of the assets and rights integrated into the bankrupt's assets on the date of the declaration of bankruptcy, as well as those that are reintegrated to the bankrupt or acquired until the conclusion of the bankruptcy proceedings. This article sets out which assets and rights are included in and excluded from the active mass.

Tell us what you think and you could win a £100 Mastercard voucher
International Law Office
  • Shipping & Transport
  • International
  • 09 April 2021

Take a moment to complete our audience survey and you could win a £100 Mastercard voucher. Your feedback will be used to make future improvements to the International Law Office.

Tell us what you think and you could win a £100 Mastercard voucher
International Law Office
  • Corporate Finance/M&A
  • International
  • 09 April 2021

Take a moment to complete our audience survey and you could win a £100 Mastercard voucher. Your feedback will be used to make future improvements to the International Law Office.

Online marketing of tobacco products
Westerberg & Partners Advokatbyrå Ab
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • Sweden
  • 09 April 2021

Despite being heavily regulated, the marketing of tobacco products is rarely subject to judicial review. The Act on Tobacco and Similar Products prohibits the marketing of tobacco products, with three exceptions. This article discusses a Patent and Market Court judgment which clarifies the rules which apply to the online sale of tobacco products under the act.

Indirect 'financial effect' of COVID-19 could be sufficient to defeat a winding-up petition
Squire Patton Boggs
  • Insolvency & Restructuring
  • United Kingdom
  • 09 April 2021

Following the government's extension of the restrictions on winding-up petitions until 30 June 2021, it is useful to note two recent cases that have considered the COVID-19 test that currently applies to winding-up petitions. In the first case, the judge took the view that the low threshold test for determining whether COVID-19 had had an impact on the financial position of the company was to be taken as settled law. In the second case, the judge offered some helpful insight into the meaning of 'financial effect'.

Supreme Court: mere retention of property does not violate automatic stay
Jones Day
  • Insolvency & Restructuring
  • USA
  • 09 April 2021

In January 2021 the Supreme Court held that a creditor in possession of a debtor's property does not violate the automatic stay, specifically Section 362(a)(3) of the Bankruptcy Code, by retaining the property after the filing of a bankruptcy petition. The court's decision provides important guidance to bankruptcy courts, practitioners and parties on the scope of the automatic stay's requirements.

Section 232 steel and aluminium duties litigation shifts into high gear
Arent Fox LLP
  • International Trade
  • USA
  • 09 April 2021

It has been almost three years since the 25% duties on steel imports and the 10% duties on aluminium imports pursuant to Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act 1962 were first imposed and legal challenges are proliferating and there is renewed legislative interest in Section 232 reform. This article highlights legal challenges worth following and provides an update on the status of World Trade Organisation litigation and recent legislative proposals for Section 232 reform.

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