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Enforcing IPRs: a European concise guide for luxury and fashion businesses - England & Wales

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Some advice to fashion and luxury businesses, from a barrister and solicitors practising in England & Wales and France, as well as a lawyer practising in Germany, specialising in intellectual property, on the practical steps to take in order to enforce one’s IPRS in France, Germany and the UK.

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Enforcing IPRs: a European concise guide for luxury and fashion businesses - England & Wales

  1. 1. Enforcing  Intellectual  Property   Rights  in  England  and  Wales   Jane  Lambert     4-­‐5    Gray’s  Inn  Square   www.4-­‐5.co.uk    
  2. 2. No  such  thing  as  UK  Law   •  Unlike  Germany  the  UK  is  a  unitary  state  so  no   there  is  no  such  thing  as  federal  law   •  AdministraEon  of  jusEce  is  devolved  to   ScoHsh  and  Northern  Irish  governments   •  There  are  three  legal  systems  in  the  UK  with   very  different  court  systems,  rules  of   procedure  and  even  legal  terminology  (eg.   “claimant”,  “pursuer”  and  plainEff”)  
  3. 3. Rest  of  Discussion  will  focus  on   England  and  Wales   •  Civil  Procedure  Rules  came  into  force  in  April   1999   •  Replaced  separate  rules  of  procedure  for  the   Senior  Courts  (then  called  the  Supreme  Court)   and  the  County  Courts   •  CPR  consist  of  Rules  and  PracEce  DirecEons   •  Part  63  and  PD  Part  63  deal  with  IP  claims   •  CPR  are  supplemented  by  Court  guides  
  4. 4. Courts  of  England  and  Wales   •  Senior  courts  include  a  Court  of  Appeal  and  a   court  of  first  instance  known  as  the  High  Court   •  High  Court  consists  of  three  divisions:   Chancery,  Queen’s  Bench  and  Family   •  Nearly  all  intellectual  property  claims  are   heard  by  the  Chancery  Division   •  Within  the  Chancery  Division  there  are  two   specialist  courts  for  IP:  the  Patents  Court  and   Intellectual  Property  Enterprise  Court  (“IPEC”)  
  5. 5. Chancery  Division   •  IPEC  hears  claims  of  less  than  £500,000  that   can  be  tried  in  no  more  than  2  days   •  IPEC  has  a  small  claims  track  for  IP  claims   (other  than  patents  and  registered  or   registered  Community  designs)  of  less  than   £10,000   •  Patents  Court  hears  patent,  registered   designs,  registered  Community  design  cases  
  6. 6. Chancery  Division   •  All  other  IP  claims  are  heard  by  the  judges  of   the  Chancery  Division  who  also  hear  company,   real  property,  trusts  and  probate  cases   •  The  Patents  Court,  IPEC  and  the  rest  of  the   Chancery  Division  apply  different  parts  of  Part   63  and  PD63  to  different  types  of  IP  claim   •  There  are  separate  Chancery,  Patent  Court,   IPEC  mulEtrack  and  small  claims  track  guides  
  7. 7. Chancery  Division   •  In  IPEC  recoverable  costs  for  claims  of  under   £500,000  are  limited  to  £50,000    for   determinaEon  of  liability  and  £25,000  for   determinaEon  of  damages  or  accountable   profits   •  In  the  IPEC  small  claims  track  recoverable   costs  are  limited  to  just  a  few  hundred  pounds    
  8. 8. Civil  Procedure  in  England  and  Wales   •  Civil  procedure  in  common  law  jurisdicEons   such  as  England  and  Wales  differs   considerably  from  that  of  the  civil  law   jurisdicEons  of  the  ConEnent   •  In  common  law  countries  it  is  the  parEes   rather  than  the  judges  who  decide  the  issues   the  court  will  try  and  the  evidence  to  be   adduced    
  9. 9. Civil  Procedure  in  England  and  Wales   •  Cases  are  determined  in  phases:   -­‐  pre-­‐acEon  correspondence  where  parEes   exchange  informaEon  and  try  to  resolve  their   dispute  through  negoEaEon  or  some  other   form  of  ADR   -­‐  issue  of  claim  and  exchange  of  statements  of   case  (formerly  known  as  “pleadings”)   -­‐  disclosure  where  parEes  exchange  lists  of   documents  in  their  possession  or  control    
  10. 10. Civil  Procedure  in  England  and  Wales          -­‐  exchange  of  witness  statements  and  experts’                reports          -­‐    trial  where  each  party  presents  its  witnesses                and  physical  evidence,  cross-­‐examines  the                  witnesses  of  the  other  parEes  and  makes  its                legal  arguments          -­‐    if  the  claimant  wins  there  is  an  inquiry  or                  account  where  the  process  is  repeated  
  11. 11. Civil  Procedure  in  England  and  Wales   •  IPEC  streamlines  that  procedure  by  requiring  a   case  management  conference  aeer  exchange   of  statements  where  the  court  fixes  a  date  for   trial,  idenEfies  issues  to  be  tried  and  evidence   to  be  adduced  and  sets  a  Emetable     •  The  small  claims  track  determines  liability  and   remedy  in  one  session  and  dispenses  with   most  of  the  other  phases  altogether            
  12. 12. Civil  Procedure  in  England  and  Wales   •  A  trial  usually  takes  place  a  year  aeer  the   issue  of  proceedings  whether  the  case   proceeds  in  IPEC  or  not     •  An  account  of  profits  or  an  inquiry  as  to   damages  takes  place  a  year  aeer  trial   •  An  appeal  to  Court  of  Appeal  can  be  heard  a   year  aeer  the  trial  or  account  or  inquiry   •  Small  claims  cases  are  heard  within  months  of   issue  of  proceedings  
  13. 13. Civil  Procedure  in  England  and  Wales   •  Common  law  procedure  much  more   expensive  than  that  of  civil  law  countries   •  A  study  by  IPAC  in  2003  found  that  the   average  cost  of  a  patent  infringement  claim  in   England  was  over  £1  million  in  Patents  Court   and  US$2  to  4  million  in  USA  but  only  about   €50,000  in  France  and  Germany  and  €10,000   to  €40,000  in  Netherlands  
  14. 14. Civil  Procedure  in  England  and  Wales   •  Because  liEgaEon  is  expensive  parEes  are   encouraged  to  sehle  their  dispute  through   negoEaEon  or  ADR  as  early  as  possible   •  Unless  there  is  good  reason  to  believe  the   defendant  will  hide  or  destroy  evidence  or   remove  or  dissipate  assets  claimants  are   expected  to  send  a  “leher  before  claim”   before  issuing  proceedings  
  15. 15. No  such  thing  as  a  “cease  and  desist”   leher  in  English  terminology   •  Nearest  we  have  is  a  “leher  before  claim”   •  Para  7.1  (1)  PD  –  Pre-­‐AcEon  Conduct  provides:     “7.1    Before  starEng  proceedings  –   (1)  the  claimant  should  set  out  the  details  of   the  maher  in  wriEng  by  sending  a  leher   before  claim  to  the  defendant.  This  leher   before  claim  is  not  the  start  of  proceedings;”   •  The  defendant  is  expected  to  respond  in  full   within  28  days  
  16. 16. No  such  thing  as  a  “cease  and  desist”   leher  in  English  terminology   •  The  purpose  of  the  leher  before  claim  is  to   encourage  negoEaEon  and  ADR  in  accordance   with  the  PD  rather  than  by  liEgaEon   •  If  a  party  does  not  try  to  resolve  the  dispute  in   accordance  with  the  PD  it  can  be  penalized  by   a  costs  order  or  some  other  sancEon  
  17. 17. InjuncEons   •  Senior  Courts  have  power  to  grant  final  and   interim  injuncEons  under  s.37  Senior  Courts  Act   1981   •  Disobedience  to  an  injuncEon  is  punished  by   imprisonment  or  financial  penalty  and  not  simply   an  astreinte  as  in  most  civil  law  jurisdicEons   •  Final  injuncEons  are  granted  aeer  trial  but  before   account  or  inquiry  and  interim  injuncEons   awarded  aeer  start  of  proceedings  
  18. 18. Interim  InjuncEons   •  Before  CPR  were  introduced  in  1999  interim   injuncEon  applicaEons  were  commonplace  in   IP  liEgaEon   •  Much  rarer  under  CPR  largely  because  they   are  expensive  and  the  losing  party  has  to  pay   the  costs  of  the  applicaEon  within  14  days  of   decision  
  19. 19. Interim  InjuncEons   •  Granted  if  the  court  decides  the  applicant  can   win,  damages  will  not  compensate  applicant   adequately  for  its  loss  if  it  wins  and  that  the   applicant  can  compensate  the  respondent   adequately  in  damages  if  the  court  later  decides   that  the  injuncEon  should  never  have  been   awarded   •  Court  has  power  to  grant  special  interim   injuncEons  known  as  “search  orders”  and   “freezing  injuncEons”  which  are  granted  without   noEce  to  the  defendant  
  20. 20. Interim  InjuncEons   •  The  small  claims  track  of  IPEC  has  no   jurisdicEon  to  grant  interim  injuncEons   •  IPEC  has  power  to  grant  interim  injuncEons   but  rarely  does  so   •  Claimants  who  require  interim  injuncEons   would  bring  their  claims  in  the  Chancery   Division  or  Patents  Court  if  the  claim  is  for   registered  or  registered  Community  design   infringement    
  21. 21. Search  Orders   •  An  order  requiring  an  occupier  to  admit  a   solicitor  who  is  independent  of  the  parEes  and   the  applicant’s  lawyers  and  experts  to  search   the  occupier’s  premises,  vehicles  and   computers  for  documents  and  physical   evidence  and  to  take  copies  or  samples  of   such  evidence   •  Only  granted  if  judge  believes  that  the   defendant  may  destroy  or  hide  evidence  
  22. 22. Freezing  injuncEons   •  An  order  prohibiEng  the  respondent  from   transferring  funds  or  spending  moneys   otherwise  than  in  the  normal  course  of   business     •  Only  granted  if  judge  believes  that  the   defendant  may  remove  or  dissipate  assets   •  Search  orders  can  be  combined  with  freezing   injuncEons  
  23. 23. What  happens  in  PracEce   •  Because  of  costs  most  cases  are  sehled  by   negoEaEon,  mediaEon  or  other  forms  of  ADR   long  before  the  acEon  goes  to  trial   •  Piracy,  counterfeiEng  and  since  1  Oct  2014   deliberate  copying  of  registered  or  registered   Community  designs  are  offences   •  IPO  and  trading  standards  officers  have  IP  Crime   Unit   •  IP  owners  can  bring  private  prosecuEons  in  worst   cases  
  24. 24. Any  QuesEons?   Jane  Lambert   4-­‐5  Gray’s  Inn  Square   020  7404  5252   jlambert@4-­‐5.co.uk   www.4-­‐5.co.uk  

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