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  •  
    16/05/2024
    Europe

    A broader interpretation of "substance or composition" - good news for patentees at the EPO?

    A recent decision from the EPO Boards of Appeal (T 1252/20) potentially paves the way for more diverse products to be patentable in Europe using the medical use claim format.The background:Article 53(c) of the European Patent Convention (EPC) excludes methods for treatment of the human or animal body by surgery or therapy and diagnostic methods practised on the human or animal body from patentability. However, this does not apply to products, in particular substances or compositions, for use in any of these methods.Furthermore, Articles 54(4) and (5) EPC provide that a claim to a known substance...
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  •  
    01/05/2024
    Europe

    Flushed and failed: General Court shuts the lid on invalidity attack against toilet seat design

    IntroductionEarlier this year, we reported on a Belgian court ruling relating to the validity and infringement of designs for cat litter trays (read about it here). This time, in a decision which will be of greater relevance to our feline friends’ human companions, the EU General Court has dismissed an appeal seeking to invalidate a design for toilet seat lids (Nextrend v EUIPO - Xiamen Axent Corporation and Axent Switzerland, Toilet seats (elements of - ) Case T-82/23). The decision re-states some key principles of design law on the impact of technical constraints for functional products,...
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  •  
    29/04/2024
    Europe

    Design decision on ‘Sole technical function’ packs a punch – The CJEU breaks down the technical design exclusion in Papierfabriek ruling

    SummaryIn a case which has been recognised as among the most impactful European design cases of the past year, the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) has clarified the principles of ‘sole technical function’ invalidity for registered designs (Papierfabriek Doetinchem BV v Sprick GmbH Bielefelder Papier- und Wellpappenwerk & Co.)This case revolves around a Community design registered by Sprick GmbH Bielefelder Papier- und Wellpappenwerk & Co (“Sprick”), which Papierfabriek Doetinchem BV (“Papierfabriek”) was alleged to have infringed.Papierfabriek...
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  •  
    26/04/2024
    United Kingdom

    World IP Day: Could IP help fuel the renewable energy transition in Scotland and beyond?

    The need to facilitate the transition to renewable energy and pressure to meet sustainable development goals continues to grow. As such, World IP Day seems an apt time to consider the vital role IP is playing in harnessing Scotland’s wealth of natural energy resources, by encouraging and protecting innovation.IntroductionIt is clear that the transition to renewable energy will rely heavily on new technology and innovation. This can be protected by a mixture of registered and unregistered IP such as patents, trade secrets, confidential information and copyright. Ensuring relevant IP protection...
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  •  
    25/04/2024
    United Kingdom

    No two (or more) ways about it: UK Patents Court highlights the importance of clear and consistent design images

    Introduction  A recent judgment from the UK Patents Court serves as a helpful reminder that clarity and consistency of visual representations are essential, when filing for design registrations.In the case of Safestand Ltd v Weston Homes PLC & Ors [2023] EWHC 3250 (Pat), the court dealt with allegations of patent infringement and the validity of registered designs related to builders' trestles. The claimant, Safestand, argued that Weston Homes infringed three of its patents and three of its re-registered EU designs (“RRDs”, previously known as Community Registered Designs)....
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  •  
    25/04/2024
    Europe

    Cheers! New EU rules to strengthen GI protection for wine, spirit drinks and agri-food products come into force on 13 May 2024

    On 23 April 2024, a new EU regulation aimed at enhancing the protection of geographical indications (GIs) for wine, spirit drinks and agricultural products, and other quality schemes for agricultural products was published in the Official Journal. The new rules, that enter into force on 13 May 2024, provide for a streamlined registration procedure, a strengthened role of producer groups, and improved provisions on GI protection (both online and offline) and sustainability.Background on Geographical Indications (GIs) for wine, spirit drinks and agri-food productsGIs are intellectual property rights...
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