Ex parte measures are rather difficult to obtain in patent matters in Switzerland (except from evidence-protection measures). Nevertheless, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court had the opportunity to opine on this subject in a recent decision dated 21 August 2013. Although this case will become better known because it was the first time that the first instance, the Swiss Federal Patent Court, had to deal with the doctrine of equivalence (and affirmed an infringement by equivalent means, see the preliminary decision of the Federal Patent Court here), it is also worth to analyze the requirements of ex parte measures in Switzerland.
In the case at hand, the patentee was informed in December 2012 by [...]
by Hetti Hilge
The District Court Cologne made some interesting remarks on the requirements of a seizure by the police on a trade show (decision of 6 May 2013, 116 QS 12/13 an, 116 Js 788/12). Under German law, a willful patent infringement constitutes a criminal act so that the public prosecution and the police are generally competent to investigate. On trade shows, seizures of products which are alleged to infringe patents or other IP rights are often based on criminal law, and for some trade shows the police are present during the whole time in order to be able to act promptly. As the police officers regularly have no detailed knowledge of patent law, they usually rely on the partial expl [...]
A long time has already passed since 23 October 2001, when Judge Jacob ordered a preliminary injunction preventing the launch of the first paroxetine generics in England. To cut a long story short, the rationale was that, if there is an obstacle blocking your way into the “garden”, you have to clear the way before entering the “garden”. Otherwise, you may be injuncted. This rationale has since then been followed by Judges in England, but also in other jurisdictions such as Germany.
On 22 July 2013, Commercial Court number 4 of Barcelona handed down an interesting decision wherein the same logic transpires. The patent owner had sent a warning letter to a third party who had obtained [...]
A recent decision of the Higher Regional Court (Oberlandesgericht) Düsseldorf now confirms that a holding company cannot easily dive away under the patent infringing activities of its subsidiaries.
Many companies are designed in the form of a group, having a holding company at the top and a number of subsidiaries which are directly or indirectly owned by the holding company. Different working areas are split between the companies of the group.
If one of these subsidiaries infringes a patent, the question arises whether and to what extent the holding itself is responsible for the infringement. Is the holding liable to compensation of damages? Does the holding have to render accoun [...]
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.
In my earlier posts (here and here) I reported and commented on the first two phases of the Italian Pfizer antitrust case, in which the Italian Antitrust Authority (IAA) accused Pfizer of having abused of a dominant position by judicially enforcing patent rights against generic latanoprost in the Italian Courts. A small but potentially meaningful development now has to be reported while the case is being heard in the last instance by the Supreme Administrative Court, after appeal by the IAA against the decision of the Regional Administrative Court.
The story commenced in October 2010 and concerned the fact that Pfizer had obtained an SPC over latanoprost on the basis of the grant in 2009 of [...]