Intellectual property news and updates

Handbags at dawn: Ralph Lauren faces patent infringement claims after releasing latest design

American fashion designer, Ralph Lauren, carries patent infringement claims in his high-tech handbag this season. Individual inventor Jimmy Bryan has filed an infringement case, claiming that the designer’s top of the range handbag infringes his own patent for a bag that contains LED lights and phone charging device. The Ralph Lauren handbag…

European Unified Patent Court and the Unitary Patent

Presently, national courts of each contracting state of the European Patent Convention decide on the infringement and validity of European patents in their own jurisdiction. This means that when a patent proprietor wishes to enforce their patent, or when a third party wishes to invalidate a European Patent once the opposition period has expired…

Pick a number between 1 and 25: claim construction – Smith and Nephew v Convatec

As many readers will be aware, the most important part of a patent application is its claims: the claims define, in words, what the invention is. Some claims include ranges, limiting the scope of protection to the extent that certain components are present in an amount falling within the range. So it was with ConvaTec’s European Patent No…

‘Swiss-type’ claims in the UK – latest update

A recent judgment from the Court of Appeal (Warner-Lambert Company, LLC v Actavis Group PTC and others [2015] EWCA Civ 556) has shed some further light on how the England and Wales Courts interpret so-called ‘Swiss-type’ pharmaceutical manufacturing method claims. Swiss-type claims take the general form: “The use of [compound X] in the…

Consultation Document on Unified Patents Court Fees Is Released

Measures are now well underway for the establishment of a Unified Patent Court (UPC) in Europe. The UPC will be a single court covering up to 25 countries and will have jurisdiction over the new European patent with unitary effect (Unitary patent). The UPC will also have jurisdiction over traditional European patents. However, for a transitional…

Google wants to buy your patents (maybe)

A few days ago, Google announced its Patent Purchase Promotion. As part of the ‘experiment’, the tech giant is inviting patent owners to offer their patents for sale to Google at a fixed price. From May 8, 2015 through May 22, 2015, we’ll open a streamlined portal for patent holders to tell Google about patents they’re willing to sell…

Technology giants battle over patent license payments

Swedish telecom equipment maker, Ericsson, has been engaged in a battle over patent license payments with US technology giant, Apple, in the United States. This battle has now found its way into Europe with Ericsson claiming that, "Apple continues to profit from Ericsson's technology without having a valid license in place." Ericsson…

When is an African patent a European Patent?

European patents extended to Morocco An agreement has been reached between the European Patent Office (EPO) and the Moroccan government that European patents are able to be extended to Morocco. As of 1 March 2015, anyone filing a European patent application will be able to request a designation for Morocco against the payment of a fee (€240…

Casting a rod into the overseas market, Wilson Gunn reels in Chinese business

This month, Wilson Gunn Partner James Robey visited Wuhan, China with UK Trade & Investment, the UK Government’s body that promotes exporting. Along with a number of other Northwest businesses, James attended a range of events tied to the opening of a new British Consulate General in the city. Wuhan is the capital of the Hubei province…

Changes to the patent box – time to act

The UK’s Patent Box tax relief scheme has been greatly welcomed by innovative British businesses as a means of reducing their corporation tax bill, but it is set to change. Generally speaking, the relief reduces corporation tax payable on patented products to 10%. The relief has been available on profits made after 1 April 2013, so many…

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