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Showing posts from June, 2017

Brexit Briefing June 2017

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Jane Lambert


A lot has happened since my last Brexit briefing in January 2017:

HMG has published its white papers on exiting from, and new partnership with, the European Union and its "great repeal bill";The Prime Minister sought unsuccessfully to take advantage of a massive lead in the opinion polls to increase her parliamentary majority in order to strengthen her hand in the Brexit negotiations;Negotiations have commenced between the British government and the EU and terms of reference have been agreed;The Commission's Art 50 Task Force has created a very useful microsite on the Brexit negotiations with some very useful publications including position papers on ongoing judicial and administrative procedures and  Judicial Cooperation in Civil and Commercial Matters;The Queen's speech has survived an amendment requiring the UK to remain in the customs union and single market but not without a substantial rebellion on the Labour benches and the …

Mrs. May is right - sometimes a bad deal really is worse than no deal

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Jane Lambert

It is hard not to feel a little bit sorry for Mr Ray Dorset, the lead singer of Mungo Jerry, whose case I discussed yesterday in Music and Entertainment Law: Music Contracts - Editions Musicales Alpha S.A.R.L. v Universal Music Publishing Ltd and Others28 June 2017 NIPC Law. Mr Dorset wrote the words of the hit song Alright, Alright, Alrightfromwhich he might reasonably have expected a shed load of money as it reached number 3 in the charts. Instead, he has been ordered to pay £33,600 plus costs to a company run by a former business associate of his former manager.  It could have been even worse for Mr Dorset as a claim by that company against him for breach of contract might well have succeeded.

So how did he find himself in that position?  Well, his first problem was that he tried to record a song without first getting the permission of the company that owned the copyright in the music to do so.  It should have been easy enough to obtain that permission. The tune had al…

What is the Midlands Engine and how does it affect IP?

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Jane Lambert

I have started a Midlands Engine resource page in NIPC East Midlands that is similar to the Northern Powerhouse resource page in IP Northwest.  The term is used in relation to a set of initiatives that were announced by Philip Hammond MP, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, in The Midlands Engine Strategyon 9 March 2017. There is also a Midlands Engine Partnership with a website and a number of publications.

As to the relevance to IP, I wrote:

"The support of enterprise and innovation should result in the creation of more inventions and other intellectual assets as well as funding for development and marketing. Licences will be required to deploy technologies that will improve connectivity and raise productivity."

I have begun a short bibliography which includes my article on The Midlands Engineof 7 Dec 2015 NIPC East Midlands.

Call me on +44 (0)20 7404 5252 or send me a message on my contact form for further information,

Buying Intellectual Property from an Administrator

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Jane Lambert

In Brantano - IP and Insolvency23 June 2017 NIPC East Midlands, I noted that the administrators of Brantano Retail Ltd., which once ran a nationwide chain of shoe shops, had instructed Metis Partners to market the company's trade marks and other intellectual property rights together with various legally protectable intellectual assets. Bids for those rights and assets have to be submitted by 12:00 on 30 June 2017 which does not leave much time for taking legal and other professional advice. Yet such advice will ve required if the bid is to be anything more than guesswork and further advice will be required on the negotiation and drawing up of any assignments and other agreements should a bid be accepted.

For further information call me on 020 7404 5252 during office hours or send me a message through my contact form.

Opinion Former: Why you should choose the UK

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The politics.co website has just published an article entitled Intellectual Property: why you should choose the UKwith a brilliant video on behalf of the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys, the Chartered Institute of Trade Mark Attorneys, The British Association of the International Federation of Intellectual Property Attorneys, the Intellectual Property Lawyers Association and the Law Society.
It makes several excellent points about our international connections, our commercial strengths, the quality of our counsel, litigators and patent and trade mark attorneys, the speed and thoroughness of our courts and our mother tongue.
Wishing all my readers a great weekend.

Arbitration News

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Jane Lambert

I should like to congratulate my colleague, Caroline Kenny QC, on her election as President of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators in Australia (see Top QC elected President of Australian global arbitration body30 May 2017). Caroline is one of several distinguished international tenants of 4-5 Gray's Inn Square.

We have a distinguished team of arbitrators and mediators based in the United Kingdom of which I am one.  I specialize in resolving intellectual property and technology disputes and am a member of the WIPO's panel of neutrals. I am also on the IPO's list of mediation providers.

Finally, the London branch of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators is holding a seminar on ADR and film disputes at the offices of Herbert Smith Freehills at Exchange House, Primrose Street, London EC2A 2EG between 18:00 and 20:00 this evening. The speakers will be Edward Cullen QC, Andrew Hildebrand, Alan Watts and Daniel Djanogly and the meeting will be chaired by James F…

My Interest in the Gulf Cooperation Countries

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Jane Lambert

The blockade of Qatar by three of its partners in the Gulf Cooperation Council which I discussed in How will the Blockade of Qatar affect IP Law in the GCC Countries? 7 June NIPC Gulf reminds us that those countries have always been important to the United Kingdom. We sell a lot of goods am services to them and they supply us with oil and gas.  We have invested heavily in their economies and they have invested in ours. Those countries would have become even more important to us in that they would have been looking to us and other advanced countries to help them develop new industries and technologies for when the oil runs out and we would have been looking to do more business with them after Brexit.

Because of the importance of this region to the UK, I started some years ago the NIPC Gulf blog which follows legal developments in the region that are likely to affect this country and vice versa.  As I emphasize in the blog;s About page, NIPC Gulf is not a blog on comparativ…

Unified Patent Court: Ratification Update:

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Jane Lambert

Art 89 (1) of the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court provides that the Agreement will come into force on the 1st day of the 4th month after the deposit with the Commission of the 13th instrument of ratification or accession including deposits of such instruments by France, Germany and the United Kingdom.
According to the Council website, 12 states have deposited instruments of ratification. The last of these was Italy which deposited its instrument on on 12 Feb 2017.  Italy's ratification is particularly significant for two reasons. The first is that it had opposed the unitary patent in C-274/11 - Spain and Italy v Commission and others[2013] EUECJ C-274/11 on the grounds that the implementing legislation was incompatible with EU law. The second reason why Italy's participation is significant is that it will be entitled to host one of the sections of the Central Division of the Court of First Instance should the UK be obliged to withdraw from the UPC in 2019.

Desp…

IP in China and Hong Kong: Our Man in China

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Jane Lambert

An important part of my work is connected with China. Hardly surprising given the size of its population, territory and GDP and increasing importance in science, technology and the arts. I am often asked to draft or review distribution, joint venture, licensing, manufacturing or other agreements for British businesses that wish to supply, invest in, or import from, China and, increasingly, for Chinese businesses that wish to supply or invest in us.

Yesterday I received an email from Tom Duke who is Her Majesty's IP Attaché to China and Hong Kong advising me of his work.  He wrote:

"My team and I support over 200 British companies a year with IP issues in China. We help companies of all sizes navigate the Chinese IP system, helping to improve their IP outcomes. We publish a regular China IP Newsletter (here) and a series of business factsheets (here). In addition to company support, I also run the UK’s bilateral policy programmes on IP with various Chinese governme…

Record Number of Page Hits in May 2017 for NIPC Law

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I started this family of blogs on 22 Aug 2005 with Porridge on Patent Infringement, a sceptical response to the European Commission's Proposal for a Council framework decision to strengthen the criminal law framework to combat intellectual property offences.  That article has attracted 170 page hits over the years.

The blog has grown over the years and has now received 737,868 page hits including 36,761 in May which was my best month ever. My readers come from all over the world with the biggest audiences in the USA 269.545, the UK 120,635, Russia 70,528, Germany 39,204 and the Republic of Ireland 34,178.

My most popular articles have been

Copyright in Photographs: Temple Island Collections and Creation Records15 Jan 2012 which attracted 40,022 hits;Injunctions against ISPs Part III: Dramatico Entertainment Ltd and Others v British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. and Others21 Feb 2012, 18,318 hits;The New Small Claims IP Jurisdiction5 March 2012, 8,121 hits;Patents: Unilever v Johnson27 May…