Latest updates

Rome Court of Appeal rules on Russian roulette clause
Grieco e Associati
  • Corporate & Commercial
  • Italy
  • 30 November 2020

The Rome Court of Appeal recently ruled on a Russian roulette clause included in a shareholders' agreement which had been entered into on a 50:50 basis. The validity of Russian roulette clauses has been disputed as several scholars consider them to be against the mandatory provisions of company law relating to a shareholder's withdrawal from a company and their assessment.

New transitional flexibility remuneration mechanism and registration of flexibility service providers
Rokas Law Firm
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • Greece
  • 30 November 2020

In July 2020 a ministerial decision of the Ministry of Environment and Energy was published in the Official Gazette. The decision encompasses the new transitional flexibility remuneration mechanism (ie, the fee paid to selected electricity providers for the provision of the flexibility service). The mechanism is now in force and will remain so until 31 March 2021 or the date of implementation of the long-term compensation mechanism regarding the electricity system's power sufficiency, whichever occurs sooner.

Stopping patent infringement in four months through administrative action
Wanhuida Intellectual Property
  • Intellectual Property
  • China
  • 30 November 2020

LPG Systems recently received an administrative decision from the Beijing Intellectual Property Office ordering an infringer to stop its design patent infringement. Previously, LPG had prevailed in an invalidation proceeding initiated by the infringer against its design patent in which the China National Intellectual Property Administration maintained the validity of this design.

Effectively using experts in IP litigation part two: practice
Smart & Biggar
  • Intellectual Property
  • Canada
  • 30 November 2020

In IP litigation, the outcome of many high-stakes cases has turned on expert testimony. It is therefore important for litigators to spend time and effort to properly identify, select and prepare expert witnesses. Effective experts may need to construe complex claims through the eyes of a person skilled in the art, assess the state of common general knowledge, conduct tests to show infringement or conduct surveys to assess reputation or likelihood of confusion. This article explores the practical aspects of expert testimony.

Time is of the essence to avoid trademark fee increases set for 2021
Venable LLP
  • Intellectual Property
  • USA
  • 30 November 2020

The United States Patent and Trademark Office recently enacted a rule that increases numerous fees for filing trademark applications, maintaining trademark registrations and filing oppositions and cancellations before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. Brand owners considering filing new trademark applications, and those with upcoming deadlines, should proceed with filings now to avoid incurring the increased government fees that will take effect on 2 January 2021.

Analysing recent amendments to corporate social responsibility legislation
Clasis Law
  • Corporate & Commercial
  • India
  • 30 November 2020

The Companies Act 2013 is the exclusive legislation which deals with corporate social responsibility (CSR) provisions in India. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs has issued various amendments to the Companies Act. On the one hand, the amendments propose to provide ease of compliance to companies; however, on the other, they also seek to penalise companies and their officers for non-compliance with CSR provisions.

Dashcams – safety versus privacy? The Austrian perspective
Schoenherr
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • Austria
  • 27 November 2020

Dashcams have become increasingly popular in recent years and a built-in dashcam is now the most sought-after feature among car buyers. Buyers' primary motivation is self-explanatory: recorded footage can be used as evidence in case of an accident. However, whether dashcams are incompatible with privacy and data protection law and thus illegal on Austrian roads is a tricky question.

DITC Portal update
Ogier
  • Corporate Tax
  • Cayman Islands
  • 27 November 2020

The new Department for International Tax Cooperation (DITC) Portal launched in early November 2020. The DITC has also issued an advisory setting out details of a phased opening of the DITC Portal, confirming that it will initially be available for Common Reporting Standard and US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act purposes, with functionality for economic substance and country-by-country reporting being launched in subsequent phases.

Money transfer for specific purpose – High Court ruling on Quistclose trusts
Squire Patton Boggs
  • Insolvency & Restructuring
  • United Kingdom
  • 27 November 2020

Quistclose trusts classically arise in situations where loans are made for a specific purpose. Disputes over Quistclose trusts often arise in insolvency situations. In a recent case, the High Court found that a Quistclose trust had arisen in a situation where solicitors were forwarded monies by a third party for a specific purpose.

Federal Council to request Parliament to abolish withholding tax on bonds
Walder Wyss
  • Corporate Tax
  • Switzerland
  • 27 November 2020

The abolition of Swiss withholding tax on bonds and other collective debt financings is a welcome measure that allows Switzerland to significantly strengthen its position as an international finance and treasury centre. All types of financing and refinancing activity in Switzerland will be facilitated as adverse withholding tax consequences can be prevented. This fundamental change of the Swiss withholding tax regime is expected to come into force on 1 January 2022 at the earliest.

Global Britain? Rules, Britannia: Britannia screens the investment waves
Gowling WLG
  • International Trade
  • United Kingdom
  • 27 November 2020

The government recently published the National Security & Investment Bill. In a marked contrast to its 'Global Britain' aspirations in a post-Brexit world, the bill will create a mandatory screening regime for investment in certain core areas of the UK economy in which national security risks are considered more likely to arise. This article considers the key implications of the proposed new regime for investment in the United Kingdom.

Trump bars investments by US persons in Communist Chinese military companies
Arent Fox LLP
  • International Trade
  • USA
  • 27 November 2020

In his last days in office, President Trump has taken a swipe against companies identified by the Department of Defence as Communist Chinese military companies by prohibiting US persons from investing in such companies. According to the applicable executive order, the national security concerns stem from China exploiting US investors to finance the development and modernisation of its military through its military-civil fusion policy.

Six government agencies call for recommendation of national green data centres in 2020
AnJie Law Firm
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • China
  • 27 November 2020

In August 2020 the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology and five other government agencies issued the Circular on Organising and Implementing the Recommendation of National Green Data Centres. According to the circular, all regions will recommend a batch of well-managed and representative data centres featuring high-energy efficiency and advanced technology in major application fields in accordance with the Evaluation Indicator System for Green Data Centres.

An uphill struggle? Drop-in planning permissions and incompatibility following Hillside case
CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
  • Real Estate
  • United Kingdom
  • 27 November 2020

A recent Court of Appeal case is the latest in a series of recent planning law cases to be decided against the developer. The courts seem to be moving towards a simpler but less flexible planning system. This is in contrast to the government's recent changes intended to promote flexibility in the planning system.

Enforcement under Security Interests (Jersey) Law 2012
Ogier
  • Private Client & Offshore Services
  • Jersey
  • 26 November 2020

The Security Interests (Jersey) Law (SIJL) 2012 came into force on 2 January 2014, changing the way in which security is created, perfected and enforced over Jersey intangible movable property. This article deals with the enforcement of security interests under the SIJL 2012.

Consultation on introduction of market restrictions on certain single-use plastics in Scotland
CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
  • Product Regulation & Liability
  • United Kingdom
  • 26 November 2020

The Scottish government has launched a public consultation on the introduction of market restrictions on certain single-use plastic items. Responses to the consultation must be submitted before 4 January 2021. The proposed market restrictions on single-use plastics follow and may extend beyond the provisions in Article 5 of the EU Single-Use Plastics Directive 2019/904.

Merger control: CMA's ability to reject remedy proposals
Gowling WLG
  • Competition & Antitrust
  • United Kingdom
  • 26 November 2020

In April 2020 the Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) dismissed a challenge by Ecolab, Inc of the Competition and Markets Authority's (CMA's) decision in its final report on Ecolab's completed acquisition of The Holchem Group Limited, including in relation to the CMA's required divestiture remedy. The CAT's judgment confirms the CMA's ability to reject proposed remedies where it does not have a high degree of confidence that they will effectively address identified competitive concerns.

DITC Portal update
Ogier
  • Private Client & Offshore Services
  • Cayman Islands
  • 26 November 2020

The new Department for International Tax Cooperation (DITC) Portal launched in early November 2020. The DITC has also issued an advisory setting out details of a phased opening of the DITC Portal, confirming that it will initially be available for Common Reporting Standard and US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act purposes, with functionality for economic substance and country-by-country reporting being launched in subsequent phases.

Supreme Court's new take on international arbitration clauses
Bofill Escobar Silva Abogados
  • Arbitration & ADR
  • Chile
  • 26 November 2020

Historically, the Santiago Court of Appeals has held that parties' only recourse against an international arbitral award is the set-aside procedure. However, the Supreme Court recently established that parties' intentions as expressed in an arbitration clause cannot be dismissed when analysing the available forms of recourse against an arbitration award. This decision emphasises the contractual nature of arbitration and the importance of the parties' intentions when determining the effects of an arbitration agreement.

Competition Protection Agency investigates potential collusion among four LPG providers
Schoenherr
  • Competition & Antitrust
  • Slovenia
  • 26 November 2020

The Competition Protection Agency has initiated an investigation into a potential restrictive agreement or concerted practices among four energy companies. The agency has reasons to believe that the companies breached Article 6 of the Prevention of the Restriction of Competition Act and Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union by agreeing to accept returns of only their own liquefied petroleum gas cylinders.

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