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Extraterritorial acts can constitute a patent infringement in Germany

The Bundesgerichtshof (German Federal Court of Justice) in the decision Audiosignalcodierung (judgement of 3 February 2015, X ZR 69/13) confirmed the principle established in the Bundesgerichtshof decision Funkuhr II, according to which the delivery of a product to a third party in a territory outside of Germany constitutes a patent infringement in Germany if the party was aware that the product will subsequently also be imported into Germany.

In the case Audiosignalcodierung concerning contributory infringement the defendant was a Chinese company that delivered means which constituted an essential element of the patented method, inter alia, to another company in China. Following the finding [...]

What happened to/in Summer 2014 in the Netherlands?

Before diving into this year’s Oktoberfest with the Munich IP community, colleague contributor Thorsten Bausch summarized the German Federal Court of Justice’s case law of Summer 2014. As the days of raising beer mugs and polka dancing come to an end in Munich, so does the Dutch Summer (finally). Time for an overview of what occupied the Dutch Courts these past months.

As in Germany, the doctrine of equivalence was considered by the Hague District Court. In the MBI/Shimano case the District Court applied the Dutch Supreme Court’s Medinol/Abbott findings on equivalence of a few months earlier (on stent litigation which meandered through Europe for years).

In Medinol/Abbott the Supreme C [...]

Düsseldorf strengthens its position as a venue for patent infringement litigation – Second Patent Senate at the Higher Regional Court started its work in 2014

by Hetti Hilge

The Higher Regional Court Düsseldorf has set up a second Senate (panel of judges) that is specifically competent for patent infringement litigation. The Higher Regional Court is the appeal instance for first instance judgments of the Regional Court Düsseldorf in patent cases.

Already at the beginning of 2013, a third civil chamber that is specifically competent for patent infringement cases has been set up at the District Court Düsseldorf as a result of the increasing number of patent infringement complaints at this venue (see our previous post on the announcement). With about 600 cases per year, the District Court of Düsseldorf is the most popular court for patent infrin [...]

The “Italian torpedo” never ending saga

In a recent ruling rendered in the General Hospital v Asclepion case, the Italian Supreme Court wrote the latest episode of the “Italian torpedo” never ending saga. In particular, the Supreme Court upheld the jurisdiction of the Italian Courts in respect of a cross-border Declaration of Non Infringement (DNI). This ruling overturns the earlier Supreme Court judgment in the BL Macchine Automatiche v Windmoeller case which had ruled out cross-border DNI claims, also known as “Italian torpedoes”. The above is probably sufficient news for the older readers of this blog but not for the younger ones.

Italian Torpedo

Italian torpedo was a popular defence in European patent litigation by whi [...]

Mannheim Regional Court on the Liability of a Foreign Supplier under German Patent Law

The Mannheim Regional Court decided on March 8, 2013 (court docket: 7 O 139/12) that a supplier which is located abroad is regularly only liable for participating in patent-infringing acts in Germany if the foreign supplier learns, e.g. by means of a warning letter, that its supply of products to the German market may result in a patent infringement under German law and if the supplier does not refrain from further shipments into Germany.

English Court of Appeal upholds service of cross-border DNI

On 21 May 2013, the Court of Appeal issued its rejection of Lilly’s appeal in relation to Actavis’ purported service of an application for a Declaration of Non Infringement (DNI) in respect of not only the UK designation of Lilly’s European Patent relating to a particular salt form of pemetrexed (“the Patent”), but also the French, German, Italian and Spanish designations.

The principle emerging from the decision is that the English courts consider that it may, at least in principle, be appropriate to hear the arguments relating to infringement of several designations of the same European Patent together in London. Practice points to emerge are: (i) inter-solicitor correspondence m [...]

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