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The combined December/January issue of Managing IP is now live on the website, and it’s a good opportunity to highlight some items that are freely available to all readers

Notably, this month, we re-publish our latest sponsored roundtable on litigation in Latin America, featuring contributions from Argentina, Brazil and Mexico as well as from the UK and US IP attachés.

The discussion covered a range of issues, but speed and predictability in the courts topped people’s concerns.

UK IP attaché Sheila Alves said: “The most complaints I have heard is that it is too slow to litigate in Brazil, and there is a lack of specialised judges,” while Albert Keyack, her US counterpart, added: “Part of the slowness complaint is that the Brazilian PTO has a backlog. However the government has recently given them more resources to hire more examiners, which is welcome. I think you will see those complaints become less prominent as the speed of examination improves.”

Areas where improvements are needed include damages claims, preliminary injunctions and judicial training, said the participants. “We require certain guidelines to decide the proof of experts for infringement and cancellation cases. We need more guidelines to evaluate and apply the decisions on technical evidence,” said Alejandro Luna of Olivares & Cia.

Alberto Guerra of Guerra Law added: “The other thing is to improve the quality of judges and in particular experts, who have a very important role in patent litigation because the judges do not understand the technology.”

Gabriela DuranIn-house counsel Gabriela Duran of One-Red Argentina (left) sounded an optimistic note: “Overall, I am optimistic that things have improved since IP rights started to be more relevant in Latin America. And yes! We still have a long road ahead of us, but we have improved in the past, and we still do it.”

The December/January issue also includes many contributions from our international briefings correspondents in various countries.

These cover issues such as the moves towards a single patent system in Australia and New Zealand; the examination of foreign trade mark applications in China; the amended Rule 164 at the EPO; why the patent invalidation rate at the JPO is falling; and lessons on intent-to-use applications from a US trade mark case involving Polo.

Here are all this month’s briefings:

Argentina: Trade secrets and the employer-employee relationship

Australia: Australia and New Zealand move closer to a single patent

Austria: Who owns a design right?

Belgium: The strict Belgian patent law

Canada: A lesson in drafting settlement agreements

China trade marks: Examination of foreign trade mark applications

Croatia: Changes to IP crime law

European Patent Office: New rule makes applicants more equal

France: Changes coming on patent limitation

Germany: Federal Supreme Court endorses functional claim language

Greece: New procedural rules on trade mark prosecution

India: No compulsory licence without reasonable efforts

Indonesia: Get ready for

Japan: Hindsight excluded in inventive step

Malaysia: Changes to industrial design protection

Mexico: Evidence in non-use actions

Middle East: All you need to know about IP in the GCC

New Zealand: An integrated approach to patent protection

The Philippines: Non-payment of filing fees is fatal

Romania: Debatable new approach to trade mark examination

Russia: Court sides with Gagarin’s daughter

Singapore: Post-published data in Singapore

South Korea: Supreme Court rules on English/Korean marks

Switzerland: Equivalence doctrine comes into line

Taiwan: Pharmaceutical patent term extension

US Trade marks: PRL challenges intent-to-use application

The roundtable and the international briefings are sponsored by the participating firms.

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