Intellectual Property UK

  • February 23, 2024

    Toyota Engine Patent Stalls At EPO For Lack Of Inventive Step

    Toyota has lost protections over its exhaust heat recovery system after an emissions specialist showed that the Japanese automotive giant's engine tech lacked an inventive step, the European Patent Office said Friday.

  • February 23, 2024

    'Dry January' Campaign Launcher Can't Trademark Name

    A British nonprofit organization has failed to register a trademark for "Dry January," after the country's intellectual property officials ruled that it simply described non-alcoholic drinks and had become too widely used to become exclusive.

  • February 23, 2024

    EasyGroup Hits Dead End In 'EasyTaxi' TM Battle

    EasyGroup Ltd. has lost its fight to keep a trademark for "easyTaxi" after a European Union intellectual property authority concluded that the brand is merely descriptive and "devoid of distinctive character."

  • February 23, 2024

    Philips Patent Gets Brushed Off On Appeal

    Philips has failed to patent a method for tracking the movement of a toothbrush inside the mouth after European officials ruled that the amendments proposed by the Dutch electronics giant extended beyond its original application against the rules.

  • February 23, 2024

    UK Litigation Roundup: Here's What You Missed In London

    This past week in London has seen Tesco target competing retailer Lidl with a copyright claim as they battle in the Court of Appeal over the design of Tesco’s Clubcard, the directors of a taxi business sue the creator of an AI route mapping app for professional negligence, Global Aerospace Underwriting Managers tackle an aviation claim by an Irish investment company, and Robert Bull hit with a general commercial contracts claim by Hancock Finance.

  • February 23, 2024

    Fox Williams Beats £30M Game Show IP Negligence Claim

    Fox Williams won its bid Friday to strike out a media company's case that the law firm bungled its game show copyright claim and caused it to lose out on £30 million ($38 million), as a court ruled that the claim was "hopeless."

  • February 23, 2024

    Big Brands Face Do-Or-Die Decision On Russian TMs

    The Russian government has broadly upheld the intellectual property rights of foreign companies since international brands pulled out of the market, but the clock is ticking for cancelation proceedings if they don't get back to business in the next year, experts warn.

  • February 22, 2024

    HD Hyundai Loses TM Appeal Over Abstract Rival Sign

    An American company can register an "abstract" trademark after European intellectual property officials ruled that it was not similar to HD Hyundai's earlier marks, as consumers would only see vertical bars rather than a word.

  • February 22, 2024

    Sony Loses Bid To Stop Hendrix Bandmates' Copyright Trial

    Sony Music lost another attempt on Thursday to avoid facing a copyright challenge in England over music royalties from Jimi Hendrix's band, with a London judge saying the estates of his bandmates have an arguable case over IP rights for music streaming services.

  • February 22, 2024

    Britvic Sues Slushie Machine Biz Over Tango Ice Blast TM

    Soft drinks giant Britvic has sued a U.K. slushie machine business for allegedly infringing the copyright for its Tango Ice Blast drinks by mimicking the branding for its own drinks machines.

  • February 22, 2024

    Cypriot Companies Can't Halt Halloumi Registration

    A group of cheese-makers have failed to prevent the registration of "Halloumi" as a protected designation of origin, with a European court ruling that the application did not depart from previous national standards about its ingredients.

  • February 22, 2024

    4 Questions For Bird & Bird IP Partner Sally Shorthose

    Sally Shorthose, an intellectual property lawyer with Bird & Bird LLP, says that between Brexit and the emergence of artificial intelligence we are living in “a period of almost unprecedented change in IP law.” Shorthose tells Law360 what attracted her to work in the life sciences sector and IP law and discusses the biggest trends she has seen throughout her career.

  • February 22, 2024

    L'Oréal Scrubs Out Rival's 'Libre' TM Appeal At EU Court

    L'Oréal has persuaded a European Union court to throw out a competitor's latest attempt to register its "La Crème Libre" trademark, with the court ruling that consumers could confuse it with the French cosmetic giant's own "libre" sign.

  • February 21, 2024

    Lidl Tackles 'Bad Faith' TM Claims In Tesco Clubcard Spat

    Counsel for Lidl argued on Wednesday that a London court was wrong to rule that the German retailer had registered a trademark for a wordless variant of its logo in bad faith, as intellectual property lawyers await further guidance from the U.K.'s top court.

  • February 21, 2024

    End Of The Line For Cable-Laying Machine Patent Dispute

    A European patent board has revoked an Italian infrastructure company's protections for a cable-laying machine, concluding that it was obvious and others would have eventually figured out how to make it.

  • February 21, 2024

    Distiller's Amazonian TM Fails To Swing EU Court On Appeal

    A Spanish distiller lost his bid on Wednesday to register a trademark for "Amazonian Gin Co.," when a European court ruled that the mark was too descriptive of the origins and ingredients of the product.

  • February 21, 2024

    Patent Plausibility Faces Uncertain Future At The EPO

    A landmark decision by the European Patent Office to allow evidence submitted after filing a patent application to be used to prove whether a patent is "plausible" has left many questions unanswered. Here, lawyers in the IP sector look for those answers.

  • February 21, 2024

    Satoshi Associates Deny Wright's Claim To Be Bitcoin Creator

    Two cryptocurrency specialists who had interactions with the pseudonymous inventor of bitcoin in the 2000s told a London court on Wednesday that they do not believe Craig Wright's claims to be the elusive Satoshi Nakamoto.

  • February 20, 2024

    Tesco Branding Does Suggest Price-Matching, Lidl Tells Court

    Counsel for Lidl told an appeals court Tuesday that a London judge was clear in its reasoning why rival supermarket Tesco's club card branding conveyed a "price matching message" to its shoppers in order to benefit from Lidl's reputation for discount prices.

  • February 20, 2024

    Lundbeck Patent For Alcohol Dependence Treatment Fails

    A European appellate board refused to let Lundbeck patent an alcohol-dependence treatment, ruling that it might have been new, but other scientists would have eventually reached the same conclusion about which patients were most likely to benefit from a drug.

  • February 20, 2024

    Straumann Scores Win In Dental Implant Patent Appeal

    A dental implant maker has won its bid to patent an implant with a ceramic surface made of zirconia, after European patent officials found that an amended version was not obvious.

  • February 20, 2024

    Piping Hot Can't Ride TM Wave For Sea-Inspired Products

    An Australian company has failed to register a trademark for "Sea by Piping Hot," after European intellectual property officials ruled that shoppers might think it was a new line of products from U.S. supplement maker Piping Rock.

  • February 20, 2024

    Top 5 Cases To Watch At The Unified Patent Court

    The long-awaited opening of Europe’s Unified Patent Court has brought a period of uncertainty, leaving patent litigators navigating a new frontier for IP disputes and watching closely for the first major decisions set to be handed down in 2024.

  • February 19, 2024

    Tesco Says Judge 'Over-Impressed' By Lidl TM Evidence

    Tesco argued in an appeals court Monday that a judge relied too heavily on accounts from consumers to determine whether it had tried to pass off its products as being as good as Lidl's when it adopted fresh branding for its loyalty pricing scheme.

  • February 19, 2024

    Unilever Dissolves P&G's Laundry Powder Patent

    Unilever has convinced a European patent board to scrap Procter & Gamble's protection for technology used to dry out laundry powder, with officials concluding the same process was set out in manufacturing handbooks from decades ago.

Expert Analysis

  • New Reduced EPO Fees May Shift Applicant Demographics

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    The upcoming European Patent Office fee reduction scheme, aimed at helping smaller organizations access the patent system, is a positive step that could help shift the applicant demographic, which has typically been dominated by larger businesses, says Annabel Williams at Marks & Clerk.

  • Mitigating And Managing Risks Of AI Use In Private Equity

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    While generative artificial intelligence has the ability to transform private equity firms and their portfolio companies, its deployment brings inherent risks, including those presented by the forthcoming EU AI Act, requiring appropriate risk management strategies, processes and policies to be adopted, says Barry Fishley at Weil.

  • Aldi Design Infringement Case Highlights Assessment Issues

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    The forthcoming English Court of Appeal decision in Marks and Spencer v. Aldi, regarding the alleged infringement of design rights, could provide practitioners with new guidance, particularly in relation to the relevant date for assessment of infringement and the weight that should be attributed to certain design elements in making this assessment, say Rory Graham and Georgia Davis at RPC.

  • Generative AI Raises IP, Data Protection And Contracts Issues

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    As the EU's recent agreement on the Artificial Intelligence Act has fueled businesses' interest in adopting generative AI tools, it is crucial to understand how these tools utilize material to generate output and what questions to ask in relation to intellectual property, data privacy and contracts, say lawyers at Deloitte Legal.

  • Vodafone Decision Highlights Wide Scope Of UK's FDI Rules

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    The U.K. government’s recently imposed conditions required for its approval of Vodafone and Etisalat’s strategic relationship agreement under its National Security and Investment Act jurisdiction, illustrating the significance of the act as an important factor for transactions with a U.K. link, says Matthew Hall at McGuireWoods.

  • What The EU AI Act Could Mean For Patent Law

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    As the EU Artificial Intelligence Act has now been endorsed by all member states, companies and patent owners with interests in the bloc may want to prepare for when the act enters into force, including by considering potential subject matter exclusions, says Terence Broderick at Murgitroyd.

  • Considering A Practical FRAND Rate Assessment Procedure

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    As the debate over a fair, reasonable and nondiscriminatory rate continues inside and outside courtrooms, a practical method may assess whether the proposed FRAND rate deviates significantly from what is reasonable, and ensure an optimal mix of assets for managers of standard-essential patent portfolios, says consultant Gordon Huang.

  • How AI Inventorship Is Evolving In The UK, EU And US

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    While the U.K. Supreme Court's recent decision in Thaler v. Comptroller-General is the latest in a series of decisions by U.K., U.S. and EU authorities that artificial intelligence systems cannot be named as inventors in patents, the guidance from these jurisdictions suggests that patents may be granted to human inventors that use AI as a sophisticated tool, say lawyers at Mayer Brown.

  • Cos. Should Plan Now For Extensive EU Data Act Obligations

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    The recently enacted EU Data Act imposes wide-ranging requirements across industries and enterprises of all sizes, and with less than 20 months until the provisions begin to apply, businesses planning compliance will need to incorporate significant product changes and revision of contract terms, say Nick Banasevic, Robert Spano and Ciara O'Gara at Gibson Dunn. 

  • UK Ruling Revitalizes Discussions On Harmonizing AI And IP

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    The U.K. Supreme Court's decision in Thaler v. Comptroller-General last month has reinvigorated ongoing discussions about how the developments in artificial intelligence fit within the existing intellectual property legislative landscape, illustrating that effective regulation will be critical as the value and influence of this sector grows, say Nick White and Olivia Gray at Charles Russell.

  • AI Inventorship Patent Options After UK Supreme Court Ruling

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    The U.K. Supreme Court's recent ruling in Thaler v. Comptroller-General of Patents, Designs and Trade Marks that an AI system cannot be an inventor raises questions about alternative approaches to patent protection for AI-generated inventions and how the decision might affect infringement and validity disputes around such patents, says David Knight at Brown Rudnick.

  • Acquisition Of AI Tech Poses Challenges For Media Industry

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    The artificial intelligence regulatory landscape is changing quickly, and media and entertainment companies planning to acquire AI technology through a merger, acquisition or licensing deal should be mindful of potential new compliance requirements and AI-specific insurance products, say lawyers at Covington.

  • Cos. Should Weave Metaverse Considerations Into IP Strategy

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    In light of the increasing importance of intellectual property protection in digital contexts, including a growing number of court rulings and recent updates to the classification of digital assets, companies should include the metaverse as part of their trademark strategy to prevent potential infringements, says Gabriele Engels at D Young & Co.

  • Mitigating Compliance And Litigation Risks Of Evolving Tech

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    Amid artificial intelligence and other technological advances, companies must prepare for the associated risks, including a growing suite of privacy regulations, enterprising class action theories and consumer protection challenges, and proliferating disclosure obligations, say attorneys at Eversheds Sutherland.

  • Major EU AI Banking Ruling Will Reverberate Across Sectors

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    Following the European Court of Justice's recent OQ v. Land Hessen decision that banks' use of AI-driven credit scores to make consumer decisions did not comply with the General Data Protection Regulation, regulators indicated that the ruling would apply broadly, leaving numerous industries that employ AI-powered decisions open to scrutiny, say lawyers at Alston & Bird.

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