Latest updates

Liability for damages due to export of toxic waste: revisited
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • Sweden
  • May 28 2018

A Swedish district court recently ruled on a matter where approximately 800 Chileans had sued a Swedish mining company for damages, based on the grounds that the mining company had exported toxic waste which subsequently caused damage to the plaintiffs' health. The court held that the mining company was not liable for damages and the plaintiffs were obliged to pay the mining company's full litigation costs.

Supreme Court to try limitations on judicial review of admissible evidence
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Competition & Antitrust
  • Sweden
  • May 10 2018

Under the Competition Act, claims that a document is covered by legal privilege may be assessed by the courts. However, no equivalent possibility of judicial review exists for documents that allegedly fall outside the scope of dawn raid warrants. The question remains as to whether the lack of judicial review of such decisions is compatible with the European Convention on Human Rights and EU law.

Private copying levies on technically independent devices
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Intellectual Property
  • Sweden
  • April 23 2018

The Supreme Court has rendered its judgment in a long-running dispute concerning private copying levies on mobile phones with an external memory device. The court found that the right to collect private copying levies extends to devices which consist of two technically independent devices, even if the independent devices are not "especially suited for the production of copies of works for private use" and would thus not be subject to private copying levies if sold individually.

Forfeiture of Pirate Bay domain names
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Intellectual Property
  • Sweden
  • March 05 2018

The Supreme Court has confirmed that domain names are property which can be forfeited to the state, providing rights holders with another measure in their fight against online infringement. The court noted that the concept of 'property' is central for the rules on forfeiture. It concluded that a person who registers a domain name is granted an exclusive right to that domain name and the right to a domain name may be subject to dispute resolution and entitlement claims.

Liability for damages due to export of toxic waste
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • Sweden
  • January 29 2018

In the mid-1980s a Swedish mining company exported toxic waste to Chile to be processed. In the 1990s the waste was allegedly used in building foundations and the high arsenic levels allegedly caused serious health issues to the local residents. Subsequently, close to 800 Chileans sued the Swedish mining company. The trial started in October 2017 after more than three years of preparatory proceedings. A decision is expected in early 2018.

No damages for margin squeeze in follow-on claim
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Competition & Antitrust
  • Sweden
  • January 25 2018

In December 2017 the Svea Court of Appeal dismissed an abuse of dominance damages claim against Telia Company AB. In 2013 Telia was fined for abusing its dominant position in the asymmetric digital subscriber line market by applying a margin squeeze on its competitors. Earlier in 2017 a follow-on claim by telecoms operator Yarps, based on the same infringement, was rejected by the Svea Court of Appeal.

Pharmaceutical companies request Patent and Registration Office to reassess decisions
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • Sweden
  • November 22 2017

In eight landmark decisions, the Patent and Market Court of Appeal decided that the terms for already granted supplementary protection certificates (SPCs) should be recalculated in order to reflect a 2015 European Court of Justice decision regarding the method for calculating SPC terms under EU Regulation 469/2009. Several pharmaceutical companies that had been granted SPCs noted that the Patent and Registration Office's method of calculating SPC terms was not in line with EU law.

Competition Authority receives greater decision-making powers
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Competition & Antitrust
  • Sweden
  • November 02 2017

After years of intense debate, a new government bill will give the Competition Authority greater decision-making powers in relation to notified mergers in Sweden. An official government report states that the authority's decision-making powers should lead to an increased incentive for fast, high-quality decision making and eliminate time losses that might arise as a result of the authority preparing a lawsuit instead of a decision.

No presumption of imprisonment for copyright infringement
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Intellectual Property
  • Sweden
  • October 09 2017

The Supreme Court recently clarified that copyright infringement is not a crime where the presumed penalty is imprisonment. This decision marks a change in relation to previous case law regarding the penalty for copyright infringement through illegal file sharing. The Supreme Court has now aligned the view on the severity of IP infringements. This is a welcome development, although rights holders may have benefited from a stricter view and a development in the opposite direction.

Proportionality grounds for exemption from national species protection provisions
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • Sweden
  • July 10 2017

The Land and Environment Court of Appeal recently determined a case regarding exemption from national provisions to protect the fungus species Sarcosoma globosum. While the ruling provides some nuance and clarification, the case has since been subject to interesting and varying interpretations by land owners, authorities and law practitioners.

Rights holders should be careful when requesting preliminary injunction
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Intellectual Property
  • Sweden
  • May 15 2017

The holder of an IP right which considers that right to be infringed will often seek a preliminary injunction. If the injunction is wrongfully granted and then overturned, the plaintiff is liable to pay damages to the defendant. A recent Supreme Court case discussed several issues relevant to proceedings concerning such damages and damages in general and is likely to be a leading case for years to come.

New pricing principles applied in decision on orphan drugs
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • Sweden
  • April 12 2017

The Dental and Pharmaceutical Benefits Agency recently reassessed the reimbursement status of Cerezyme and VPRIV – two products indicated against Gaucher's disease – and decided to decrease the products' prices. This caused the marketing authorisation holders behind the products to withdraw them from the reimbursement system. Consequently, there is no longer a product against Gaucher's disease that is nationally reimbursed in Sweden.

New Climate Act – pioneering or meaningless?
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • Sweden
  • March 13 2017

The Cross-party Committee on Environmental Objectives recently presented its final report, "A climate policy framework for Sweden". The Climate Policy Framework is a result of a cross-party political agreement that will supposedly make the climate a top issue in all policy work. The report resulted in a draft bill which was circulated for consideration. The Council on Legislation presented its views on the new Climate Act in February 2017.

Guidance on preparatory patent infringement
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Intellectual Property
  • Sweden
  • March 06 2017

In a recent case, the claimants brought forward other circumstances to demonstrate that a preparatory patent infringement had occurred. The Stockholm District Court was clear that it must be demonstrated that preparatory acts are undertaken with the intent to commit or promote patent infringement. The decision appears to indicate that stating in general terms that valid patent rights will be respected is sufficient to oppose claims of preparatory infringement.

Sweden reviews financing and pricing
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • Sweden
  • February 08 2017

The government recently issued new directives to review the pricing and reimbursement system and the national financing system for medicinal products. The government declared that the existing system is complex and complicated and must be improved in order to operate a modern healthcare system. The review seeks to find a clear division of responsibilities between the national government and local county councils and regions and to establish foreseeable processes for stakeholders.

Contract interpretation in digital music industry
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Intellectual Property
  • Sweden
  • December 12 2016

The Svea Court of Appeal recently shed much-needed light on whether a right to digital use can be established through the interpretation of recording contracts from a time when such use did not even exist. The case shows how a party to a contract can be found to have consented to new terms regarding digital use through passivity and confirms that a recording artist has standing to seek an injunction on his or her own without the co-creators.

Prohibition of debated herbicide
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • Sweden
  • November 07 2016

The Environmental Court recently rejected a farmers' organisation's appeal and refused to grant a new emergency authorisation for the use of Stomp SC in Sweden regarding the commercial production of onions. According to the appellant, the decision could jeopardise the competitiveness of certain Swedish crops on the European market, since Stomp SC is allowed in other EU member states and no equally effective alternatives are available in Sweden.

Prison for company executives for copyright infringement
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Intellectual Property
  • Sweden
  • November 07 2016

The Stockholm Patent and Market Court recently sentenced four company executives to up to 18 months in prison and ordered them to pay fines and damages amounting to several million Swedish kronor for copyright and trademark infringement through the online sale of counterfeit furniture. In light of the considerable damages, forfeiture of illegal gains and criminal liability, the story is likely to continue with an appeal.

No copyright protection for sport broadcasts
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Intellectual Property
  • Sweden
  • October 03 2016

The Supreme Court recently ruled on whether linking to live broadcasts of hockey games was communication to the public, and whether the live broadcasts met the requirements for copyright protection. The court made clear that the EU standard of copyright fully applies in Swedish law. Following this judgment, it would appear that these types of broadcast can rely only on the protection of related rights.

Off-label use: a comparator in health technology assessments
Advokatfirman Lindahl
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • Sweden
  • September 28 2016

The Dental and Pharmaceutical Benefits Agency (TLV) recently denied reimbursement for an orphan drug for the treatment of chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension based on a health technology assessment which took into account off-label use of treatments for pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). The Stockholm Administrative Court has since upheld the TLV decision, agreeing with the TLV's reasoning that the orphan drug should be compared with available PAH treatments.