This week on MIP: InterDigital v Lenovo ruling, India’s legal market opens
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This week on MIP: InterDigital v Lenovo ruling, India’s legal market opens

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We provide a rundown of Managing IP’s news and analysis coverage from the week, and review what’s been happening elsewhere in IP

Lenovo to pay InterDigital $138.7m for FRAND royalty

The England and Wales High Court ruled yesterday, March 16, that Lenovo must pay InterDigital $138.7 million for a global licence to its 3G, 4G and 5G standard-essential patents.

The ruling, by Mr James Mellor, was the most hotly anticipated fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory judgment in the UK since the Supreme Court’s decision in Huawei v Unwired Planet in 2020.

Click here to read the full article.

India opens legal market to foreign law firms

The Bar Council of India is to allow foreign lawyers and law firms including those dealing with intellectual property issues to operate in India, according to new rules published on Monday, March 13.

The Gazette of India published an update by the Bar Council of India which stipulated that such lawyers and firms will also be eligible to open offices in India.

Whether the government should open the Indian legal sector to foreign law firms has been a contentious issue for several years.

Click here to read the full article.

Italian lawyers fear French UPC ‘landgrab’

Italian lawyers fear Milan’s potential Unified Patent Court central division will miss out on key pharmaceutical cases if talks with France and Germany result in some life sciences cases being heard in Paris.

A spokesperson for Germany’s Ministry of Justice confirmed to Managing IP on Monday, March 13, that trilateral discussions with Italy and fellow UPC central division host France were ongoing and that a decision was expected “shortly”.

Click here to read the full article.

USPTO lays ground for review of Fintiv rules

The USPTO has indicated that it plans to initiate regulatory action related to Fintiv, it has emerged.

In a filing with the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs on March 9, the USPTO said it would publish an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM).

An ANPRM is a preliminary notice that an agency is considering regulatory action

Click here to read the full article.

Irish UPC supporters target November referendum

Politicians, lawyers and business officials have urged the Irish government to hold a referendum to ratify the Unified Patent Court Agreement no later than November this year, but the deputy prime minister has said a vote may not take place until 2024.

The Irish Business and Employers Confederation and the Association of Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys said on Tuesday, March 14, that a vote on the UPC should take place alongside a gender equality referendum already scheduled for that month.

But Micheál Martin, the deputy prime minister, suggested in parliament that a vote could be pushed back to next year.

Click here to read the full article.

Other articles published by Managing IP this week include:

Talk of IP divisions excites counsel but Delhi remains top

Counsel welcome USPTO work on false mark fight but want more

Weekly take: Milan court is UPC elephant in the room

Patent funders remain wary of picking bad apples

Fed Circuit Apple ruling has little Fintiv impact: counsel

Elsewhere in IP

AI reforms across the Atlantic

The UK government revealed its spring budget on Wednesday, March 15, saying it would create an artificial intelligence (AI) “sandbox”. The initiative will trial faster approaches to help businesses get products to market, said the government, which also pledged to work with the UKIPO on potential changes to intellectual property rules. The government also announced a tax credit scheme to support research and development by SMEs.

Still on AI, the US Copyright Office released a statement of policy yesterday, March 16, to clarify its rules for examining and registering works that contain AI-generated material. The office noted that the term “author” excludes non-humans. However, it added that where works contain AI-generated material, it will issue a registration certificate with a disclaimer addressing the AI so long as there is sufficient human authorship.

Sweary skateboard TM fails

The EU General Court dismissed an attempt by a skateboarding company to register an EU trademark for the term ‘Fucking awesome’ on Wednesday, March 15. FA World Entertainment lost its fight after the court backed an earlier ruling by the EUIPO’s Fifth Board of Appeal from May 2022.

Funder-backed SilcoTek sues

Coating services company SilcoTek sued lab equipment company Waters Corporation yesterday, March 16, for patent infringement at the District Court for the District of Delaware. The plaintiff is filing suit over two patents related to high-performance liquid chromatography, an analytical chemistry technique. Litigation funder Omni Bridgeway is backing SilcoTek, which is being advised by the Webb Law Firm.

Hogan Lovells snags patent partner

Hogan Lovells has hired Gertjan Kuipers as a patent litigation partner in Amsterdam, the firm announced on Wednesday, March 15. Kuipers, who has more than 27 years’ experience in the legal field, previously headed the patent practice at Netherlands-based law firm De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek. He will join Hogan Lovells on April 3.

New IP minister … again

Lastly, Viscount Camrose became the latest person to be appointed as the UK’s minister with responsibility for IP on Wednesday, March 15. Camrose, whose real name is Jonathan Berry, is a Conservative member of the House of Lords – the upper chamber of the UK parliament. He is the 12th person to hold the IP minister role in the last 10 years.

That's it for today, see you again next week.

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