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Defendants need not make reasonable enquiries of third parties where they cannot admit or deny allegations
RPC
  • Litigation
  • United Kingdom
  • 26 March 2019

A recent case before the Court of Appeal provides clear guidance that a defendant may properly plead that it is unable to admit or deny an allegation in circumstances where the allegation's truthfulness or falsity is neither within the defendant's factual knowledge or capable of being determined from documents or other information available to it.

New unified cancellation right for insurance contracts brings legal certainty
Schoenherr Attorneys at Law
  • Insurance
  • Austria
  • 26 March 2019

Until 2018, Austria had up to five different cancellation rights for insurance policyholders, plus the cancellation right pursuant to Section 8 of the Austrian Distance Financial Services Act. Thus, the legal situation was confusing. However, this has finally changed. Since 1 January 2019, a new Section 5c of the Austrian Insurance Contract Act provides for one unified cancellation right.

Impact of Brexit for Irish policyholders
Matheson
  • Insurance
  • Ireland
  • 26 March 2019

Large corporates based in Ireland typically have a suite of non-life insurance policies to cover a variety of risks. Given the fact that the UK insurance market is the biggest in the European Union, it is likely that at least some of the policies held by corporates based in Ireland will have been written by UK or Gibraltar-licensed insurers. As such, whatever form Brexit ultimately takes, Irish policyholders with policies written by UK insurers must assess any risk (among other things) to their ablity to renew.

Constitutional Court annuls provision on imprisonment for opposition to interim injunctions
Gün + Partners
  • Litigation
  • Turkey
  • 26 March 2019

Parties that failed to comply with an interim injunction or that violated an injunction previously faced one to six months' imprisonment. However, the Constitutional Court recently annulled this provision due to its lack of clear regulation and legal remedies. The changes will enter into force nine months after their publication in the Official Gazette and are final and binding on legislative, executive and judicial bodies, administrative authorities and real and legal entities.

Legal considerations regarding SPVs
Walder Wyss
  • Securitisation & Structured Finance
  • Switzerland
  • 26 March 2019

Switzerland has no specific securitisation legislation. Therefore, securitisation transactions are subject to the general legal framework that applies to all other financial transactions with respect to, among others, both corporate law and regulatory matters. This article provides a short overview of certain company-related aspects to consider when setting up a special purpose vehicle structure for a securitisation transaction in Switzerland.

Court has jurisdiction over recovery claim filed by Israeli insurer against foreign reinsurer
Levitan, Sharon & Co
  • Insurance
  • Israel
  • 26 March 2019

The Tel Aviv District Court recently acknowledged jurisdiction over a claim filed by an Israeli insurer against a foreign reinsurer that refused to participate in a settlement agreed by all the other reinsurers. The court noted that there was no dispute that the reinsurers' agreement included an exclusive jurisdiction clause referring to the Israeli courts and ordered a statement of claim to be served on the reinsurer.

Limits of good faith and relational nature of franchise agreements in Quebec
Lapointe Rosenstein Marchand Melançon LLP
  • Franchising
  • Canada
  • 26 March 2019

The Supreme Court of Canada recently reiterated the fact that franchise agreements are relational contracts and are therefore subject to a heightened duty of good faith pursuant to Quebec civil law. This decision is in line with a series of recent Quebec civil law decisions that have broadly interpreted, and arguably extended, the duty of good faith owed by a franchisor to its franchisees.

Lawyers go where angels fear to tread
RPC
  • Litigation
  • Hong Kong
  • 26 March 2019

In a relatively close-knit community such as Hong Kong, it is not uncommon for parties to proceedings or their witnesses, lawyers or experts to be known to a judge or tribunal member, which could create a perception of potential bias. In these circumstances, applications might be made for the recusal of the judge or tribunal member and for the case to be reassigned. Two recent cases serve as a timely reminder of the inherent difficulties and sensitivities involved in an assessment of apparent bias.

Discovery process reaches crisis point: Supreme Court to consider reform
Matheson
  • Litigation
  • Ireland
  • 26 March 2019

Businesses with experience of litigating in Ireland will be familiar with the discovery process and the onerous obligation to disclose all relevant documents which are in their power, possession or procurement. In an age when the volume of electronically stored information continues to increase exponentially, the costs and time involved in complying with discovery orders can often be disproportionate; however, change may be on the horizon.

Enforcing board members' information rights
Badertscher Attorneys at Law
  • Company & Commercial
  • Switzerland
  • 25 March 2019

The Federal Supreme Court recently considered – for the first time – whether board members' rights to information, inspection and insight can also be asserted on an appeal basis. The court also commented on the type of procedure applicable in such cases. This decision should be taken into account by board members who lack evidence or knowledge of important or necessary information, particularly if it relates to the organisation of or disputed relationships within the board of directors.

Barcelona Court of Appeal confirms validity and infringement of Nescafé Dolce Gusto patents
Grau & Angulo
  • Intellectual Property
  • Spain
  • 25 March 2019

The Barcelona Court of Appeal recently confirmed the Barcelona Commercial Court Number 5 decision which had declared two Nestlé patents to be valid and infringed by Fast Eurocafé SA. Considering the importance of the Nescafé Dolce Gusto system for Nestlé and the increased interest among competitors in commercialising compatible capsules, this judgment is of paramount importance.

UKIPO considers distinctiveness of OKAYEST for consumer products
Taylor Wessing
  • Intellectual Property
  • United Kingdom
  • 25 March 2019

In 2016 McMug Ltd successfully filed a UK trademark application for the mark OKAYEST for a number of products, including beer mugs, chinaware and flasks. However, AMC Photographics Limited challenged the mark's validity on the grounds that, among other things, it was devoid of distinctive character and was a wholly descriptive dictionary word (a superlative of okay). This case is a useful reminder that, even after registration, a mark can be challenged on the grounds of non-distinctiveness and descriptiveness.

Overview of trademark legislation
KISCH IP
  • Intellectual Property
  • South Africa
  • 25 March 2019

Trademarks are a company's most valuable asset. Over time, they can appreciate in value and as a company's reputation grows, so too will the value of its trademarks. This article provides an overview of South Africa's trademark legislation and serves as a useful guide on, among other things, the trademark application procedure, buying and selling trademarks and company or close corporation name protection.

Sober outcome for brandy manufacturer found guilty of infringing 3D trademark
Wanhuida Peksung IP Group
  • Intellectual Property
  • China
  • 25 March 2019

The Ouhai District People's Court in Wenzhou recently affirmed the significance of taking a global view when assessing the similarities between an allegedly infringing product and a 3D trademark. The dispute at issue was between Martell, one of the world's oldest cognac houses, and the Chinese manufacturer of Louis Baron XO brandy, the bottle of which was almost identical to Martell's 3D trademark.

Who owns a mark used by multiple business parties?
Danubia Patent and Law Office LLC
  • Intellectual Property
  • Hungary
  • 25 March 2019

In a recent dispute between the inventor and marketer of a food supplement gel, the Hungarian Intellectual Property Office, the Metropolitan Tribunal and the Metropolitan Court of Appeal had to determine the true owner of the associated word and device marks. Using EU case law as a guide, they considered the market situation, including the knowledge of consumers, and applied the principle of registration and the rule of good faith.

Save money: file your multi-class applications now
Smart & Biggar/Fetherstonhaugh
  • Intellectual Property
  • Canada
  • 25 March 2019

Canadian trademark law will be overhauled on 17 June 2019, with many significant changes – both procedural and substantive – coming into effect. This article discusses the important strategies to consider before these changes take effect, including tips that could save time and money now and in future.

New film production support scheme launched
  • Tech, Data, Telecoms & Media
  • Poland
  • 22 March 2019

Under a new financial support scheme, the Polish Film Institute will now offer cash rebates as a form of support for the production of feature films, documentaries, animated films and TV series. The general aims of the scheme are to assist the audiovisual market, attract foreign capital, support the production of films in Poland and promote the country and its cultural heritage abroad.

Virtual currencies – EU legal overview
  • Banking
  • European Union
  • 22 March 2019

Virtual currencies have been analysed and considered by numerous policymakers at the EU level. According to the European Central Bank, the legal definition of 'virtual currencies' tends to vary depending on the context, while the European Banking Authority defines them as a digital representation of value that is neither issued by a central bank or public authority nor necessarily attached to a fiat currency, but used as a means of exchange and transferred, stored or traded electronically.

Statement of changes to immigration rules – implications for Tier 1 (Investor) visa applicants and holders
  • Immigration
  • United Kingdom
  • 22 March 2019

The Home Office recently released its statement of changes setting out proposed changes to UK immigration rules. The statement contains the long-awaited details of changes to the Tier 1 (Investor) visa, which were announced in December 2018 shortly after the Home Office backtracked from its announcement that the visa was about to be suspended. The proposed changes are significant and clarity is needed with regard to the application of the transitional rules.

Financial distress and board of directors' liabilities
  • Insolvency & Restructuring
  • Turkey
  • 22 March 2019

Pursuant to Article 376/3 of the Commercial Code, where there are signs that a company is in financial distress, its board of directors should prepare an interim balance sheet. If the balance sheet verifies that the company is in financial distress, the board should notify the first-instance commercial court where the company is headquartered and request a bankruptcy declaration. Directors of boards which fail to follow these steps could be held civilly or criminally liable.

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