This week on MIP: Boost for litigation funders, EUIPO saga latest
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This week on MIP: Boost for litigation funders, EUIPO saga latest

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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

Litigation funders: government reprieve will ‘provide certainty’ to UK claimants

Litigation funding businesses said the UK government’s promise to reverse a Supreme Court ruling that limited their activities will enable them to continue funding meritorious claims.

Justice Secretary Alex Chalk told the Financial Times that the government would reverse “the damaging effects” of the court’s judgment in Paccar v Competition Appeal Tribunal at the first legislative opportunity. This week, sources at a litigation funder and a law firm told Managing IP they welcomed the news.

Click here to read the full story.

Desmarais secures $57m patent win for client founder met at university

Law firm Desmarais secured a $57 million patent victory for its biotech client Ravgen on Tuesday, January 16.

A jury at the District Court for the Western District of Texas found that genetic-testing company Natera had infringed one of Ravgen’s patents. Ravgen sued Natera in 2020, arguing that Natera’s Panorama prenatal screening tests infringed its patent.

Click here to read the full story.

EUIPO seeks new deputy amid fallout from bitter leadership race

The EUIPO is seeking a second deputy executive director to serve alongside incumbent Andrea Di Carlo, amid public criticism over the transparency of its election procedures.

Di Carlo, who unsuccessfully ran for the top job of executive director last year, won the backing of the EUIPO management board for an extension of his mandate last November.

Click here to read the full story.

Other articles published by Managing IP this week include:

In-house software counsel reveal their top worries

Qantm IP exclusive: listed firms free from traditional partnership ‘constraints’

‘EasyJet’ approach: firms prepare for fees review ahead of AI rollout

Weekly take: Why DIY trademark courses are at risk of breaking

Five minutes with … Yar Chaikovsky, White & Case

Elsewhere in IP

Counterfeit cost

Counterfeit goods cost the EU’s clothing, cosmetics, and toy industries €16 billion ($17.4 billion) in sales and have resulted in nearly 200,000 job losses each year, according to an EUIPO study published on Tuesday, January 16.

The study drew on data gathered from 2018 to 2021. Germany, France, Italy, Spain, and Austria incurred the largest losses, with an almost €8 billion reduction in the sale of genuine goods during that time frame in those countries, the study claimed.

UKIPO eyes copyright review

The UK government is considering changing the law on how foreign record labels and recording artists are paid when their music is broadcast or played in public, the office said on Monday, January 15.

UK copyright law gives performers and copyright owners the right to be paid when their sound recordings are broadcast or played in public in the UK.

Not every country provides similar rights. This, according to the UKIPO, means that UK performers and copyright owners are not always paid when their music is broadcast or played in public overseas.

Almost all foreign copyright owners qualify for the right to be paid in the UK – regardless of whether the other country provides similar rights. Foreign performers only qualify for this right in the UK if they are from a country that provides similar rights to UK nationals.

The UKIPO has launched a consultation, which runs until March 11, in which it has asked for feedback on different options for amending the law.

Georgia on my mind

A validation agreement between the European Patent Organisation and Georgia’s IP office entered into force on Monday, January 15.

The agreement, originally signed in 2019, means applicants will be able to validate European patents granted by the EPO at the National IP Center of Georgia, even though the country is not a member of the European Patent Convention.

There are now 45 countries in which patent protection can be obtained based on a single European patent application.

Apple Watch saga continues

Apple is free to sell its latest smart watches in the US after designing a workaround to Masimo’s patented tech.

The International Trade Commission had issued an import ban on certain Apple Watch models after finding they infringed Masimo’s patents.

Apple decided to remove the feature and has received the go-ahead from US Customs and Border Protection to sell the product, it was confirmed this week.

Crossbody conflict

Uniqlo has sued Chinese fast fashion brand Shein in Japan for allegedly ripping off its crossbody bag, it was reported this week.

The Japanese clothing chain accused Shein of selling “imitation” bags and pledged to take a “a resolute stance against any act that infringes its intellectual property”.

A spokesperson for Shein said: “Shein respects the IP rights of others and takes all claims of infringement seriously. We are currently investigating this matter.”

Copyright Office amends Copyright Claims Board rule

The US Copyright Office published a final rule on Tuesday, January 16 amending the procedure for smaller claims proceedings at the Copyright Claims Board (CCB).

The update amended language from an earlier rule published in May 2022, which allowed streamlined proceedings in damages claims worth less than $5,000.

Tuesday's rule clarified that claimants can switch between streamlined proceedings or the typical CCB proceedings at any time before service of the initial notice.

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

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