Latest Legal News

Patent Invalid if No Novelty

One of the key requirements for a patent for a technical process innovation to be successfully defended is that there must be something genuinely innovative about the subject matter of the patent. There has to be 'novelty' and an inventive step. On...

Data Storage Dispute Leads to Emergency High Court Injunction

Large companies frequently engage outside contractors to assist with storage of the vast quantities of data they produce. However, as a High Court case showed , a breakdown of such commercial relationships can give rise to urgent privacy and data protection...

Look Before You Leap With Trade Names

The first Intellectual Property Enterprise Court case heard outside London took place recently , when the court sat in Birmingham at the request of both parties involved in the dispute. It concerned an allegation of improper use of a registered trade mark...

This Is Why You Need Professional Support to Protect Your Trade Marks

The validity of trade marks can be challenged post-registration and that is one good reason why it is essential to enlist professional support in protecting them. In a case on point , the Cypriot authorities had their own disorganisation to blame after they...

Trade Marks and the Territorial Limits on the High Court's Jurisdiction

UK and EU trade marks are a highly effective means of protecting your brand – but they are subject to territorial limits. The High Court made that point in ruling that it had no power to entertain infringement proceedings brought by British airline...

ICO Publishes Technology Strategy for Next Three Years

One of the more interesting aspects of the new Technology Strategy document published by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) is that it specifically identifies Artificial Intelligence as a data protection risk to individuals and concludes that it...

Small Business Data Protection Law Compliance Checklist

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) publishes a great deal of useful information for all organisations on data protection and compliance with data protection law. The ICO has recently updated its guidance on exemptions from some of the rights and...

Confidential Information Leakage Stopped by Injunction

One of the biggest dangers when a senior employee leaves an organisation is the ease with which they can spirit away confidential information of importance to the business. Data is a critical asset for many businesses, and as well as the sanctions which may...

High Court Stamps on Illicit Live Streaming of Boxing Matches Online

Unauthorised online streaming of major sporting events, depriving organisers of their legitimate revenues, is ever on the increase. However, as a case in which the High Court came to the aid of a boxing match promoter showed, the law is far from powerless...

Failure to Have a Social Media Policy Can be Costly

Firms that do not have a social media policy in place should give consideration to introducing one and taking steps to make it part of the terms and conditions of employment for all staff members. Use of the Internet during working hours can be a...

'No Deal' Brexit - Guidance on Geographical Descriptions of Food and Drink

The Government has commenced issuing a series of guidance notes on how to proceed in the event that a 'no deal' Brexit occurs. Whilst the guidance does not have the status of law and will be replaced by legislation as soon as practicable if necessary, any...

Debranded Goods Still Protected by Trade Mark Law

Products sell for widely differing prices in different national markets and that creates the opportunity for goods to be transferred from a low-price market to a higher-price one – a practice known as 'grey importing'. This can undermine the...

New Guidance on Transfers of Data Abroad

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has issued new guidance on compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) for organisations that transfer data out of the UK. Because the GDPR protects only data within the EU, it restricts...

£500,000 or £1 Billion? It's Just a Matter of Timing

The recent £500,000 fine for Facebook regarding the transfer of data to Cambridge Analytica was widely criticised as being inadequate (Facebook makes roughly £3.5 million per hour) but it should not be forgotten that the fine was the maximum...

Unitary Patent

Obtaining a patent can be a rather arduous process, and it is therefore not surprising that sometimes thought is not given to the breadth of patent protection that is needed. The Unitary Patent (UP) is intended to solve the problem of having to undertake...

Greetings Cards Company Pays Price for Copyright Infringements

It is only right that those who make commercial use of others' creative ideas without permission should be hit hard in the pocket. Exactly that happened in a High Court case in which a greetings cards company was found to have serially infringed copyright...

Data Protection Latest

You'd have to be living on Mars not to know that the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is now in force. Its strict provisions must be complied with (the penalties for failing are swingeing) and it is practically impossible to run any organisation or...

Software Company Fails to Lock Out Customer

One aspect of intellectual property (IP) rights that is often not given much thought, but which can be extremely important indeed, is what happens when a licence to use comes to an end. Much computer technology is supplied by licence (it is quite rare for...

Agency Law Gives No Recourse to Dumped Software Reseller

Under law which originated in the EU, agents of firms have considerable protection if their agency is terminated, and can normally be compensated. This reflects the commercial reality that agents frequently make a considerable investment in time and money in...

GDPR - ICO Launches Awareness Campaign for Micro-Businesses

The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) replaces the Data Protection Act 1998 and comes into force on 25 May 2018. The new law gives individuals more control over how their data is used, shared and stored and requires organisations to be more...

Words, Not Intention, Determine Meaning of Contract

When disputes arise over the meaning of a contract, it is usual for the court to look first at what the wording of the contract means and then at the commercial logic of that wording. In a recent case , the dispute essentially turned on whether two...

Copyright Law Still Applies on the Web

The idea that the Internet is a free-for-all is nothing more than a persistent myth and the consequences of publishing copyright material online without permission can be severe. In one case, a television news broadcaster found itself in hot water after...

Morrisons Held Vicariously Liable for Rogue Employee's Data Leak

In a workplace context, an employer can be found liable for the acts or omissions of its employees, provided it can be shown that they took place in the course of their employment – i.e. where there is sufficient connection between the employee's...

E-Signature Consultation

Under the Law Commissions Act 1965 , the Law Commission is required to submit programmes of law reform to the Lord Chancellor. The latest topics put forward for consideration include a review of the use of 'e-signatures'. These are becoming increasingly...

Copyright Claim Success Does Not Necessarily Mean Victory

When a man copied part of a photograph (showing the Welsh poet Dylan Thomas's head) from a website, he probably had the commonly held (but incorrect) view that because the picture was visible on the Internet, reproduction of it would not constitute a breach...
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