Latest updates

Cybersecurity on Norwegian Continental Shelf
Advokatfirmaet Simonsen Vogt Wiig AS
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • Norway
  • June 25 2018

Operators and non-operating petroleum licensees on the Norwegian Continental Shelf must establish emergency preparedness and implement measures to deal with any risks to their petroleum activities. Traditionally, this emergency preparedness planning has been directed towards conventional risks, such as non-deliberate accidents and emergencies resulting from human mistakes, technical errors or weather conditions. However, cybersecurity is also becoming a major concern for the oil and gas industry.

Right to free speech versus online copyright protection: are radical measures needed?
Becerril, Coca & Becerril SC
  • Intellectual Property
  • Mexico
  • June 25 2018

The Supreme Court of Justice recently considered the legal relationship and boundaries between the right to free speech and the enforcement of copyright on the Internet and established four non-obligatory criteria which reflect that the Internet is a fundamental instrument for exercising free speech. Ultimately, excluding in exceptional situations, general restrictions on a website's operation on the basis of copyright infringement will not be considered constitutionally valid.

Winning first instance on procedural technicality not enough: final victory on merits remains necessary
Wanhuida Peksung
  • Intellectual Property
  • China
  • June 25 2018

The Beijing High Court recently ascertained that a cited mark had acquired well-known trademark status before the opposed mark's application date. Thus, the court corrected the first-instance court's findings, while upholding its decision to rescind the Trademark Review and Adjudication Board's decision for its failure to address all of the cited mark owner's claims.

PTAB provides 'informative' guidance concerning motions to amend in inter partes reviews
Fitzpatrick, Cella, Harper & Scinto
  • Intellectual Property
  • USA
  • June 25 2018

The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) has designated a recent order as 'informative'. Although not precedential, the order provides guidance concerning the PTAB's treatment of motions to amend patent claims challenged in inter partes review proceedings following Aqua Products, Inc v Matal, wherein it was held that a patent owner in an inter partes review proceeding does not bear the burden of demonstrating the patentability of substitute claims presented in a motion to amend.

Top five reasons to consider patent litigation in Canada
Smart & Biggar/Fetherstonhaugh
  • Intellectual Property
  • Canada
  • June 25 2018

Canada has historically been a much less active jurisdiction for patent litigation compared to the United States, which can be explained in part by the simple fact that the US market is almost 10 times the size of the Canadian market. However, there are a few notable differences in the procedure and substantive law applied in both jurisdictions that have resulted in Canada becoming an increasingly attractive option for high-stakes patent litigation in recent years.

Licensee of similar prior mark not infringer
Danubia Patent & Law Office LLC
  • Intellectual Property
  • Hungary
  • June 25 2018

Although unable to find a precedent in Hungarian case law, the Metropolitan Tribunal was still able to arrive at a convincing decision in a recent case involving a licensee's use of a mark which had been registered before the plaintiff's similar mark. Surprisingly, the plaintiff not only continued the litigation after recognising that the defendant was a licensee of the proprietor of a prior mark, but also filed an appeal.

Revised UK corporate governance coming
Squire Patton Boggs
  • Company & Commercial
  • United Kingdom
  • June 25 2018

The United Kingdom will be getting a revised Corporate Governance Code, most likely effective as of January 2019. The House of Commons Library recently published a briefing paper on corporate governance reform, which provides an overview of the corporate governance framework, including the history of the UK corporate governance code and its interaction with directors' duties under the Companies Act 2006.

Changes to regulation of electricity and gas transmission
Bruun & Hjejle
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • Denmark
  • June 25 2018

The Danish transmission systems for electricity and natural gas are owned, operated and developed by Energinet, an independent public enterprise owned by the state. The government recently made a new political agreement with a broad number of political parties concerning Energinet's future economic regulation, which means that it will become subject to a revenue framework. With the new agreement, Denmark will follow the same regulatory tendencies seen in other northern and western European countries.

Ontario Court of Appeal dismisses summary judgment appeal in Section 8 case
Smart & Biggar/Fetherstonhaugh
  • Intellectual Property
  • Canada
  • June 25 2018

The Ontario Court of Appeal recently dismissed Abbott and Takeda's appeal of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice's decision to dismiss their motion for summary judgment in an action brought by Apotex under Section 8 of the Patented Medicines (Notice of Compliance) Regulations. The action concerned lansoprazole, the active ingredient in Apo-Lansoprazole. The Ontario Court of Appeal concluded that the motions judge had not erred in finding that Apo-Lansoprazole would have received approval in 2007.

New standard in Texas as to when an owner can assert a statutory employer defence?
Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Construction
  • USA
  • June 25 2018

The 13th Court of Appeals in Edinburg, Texas recently issued an opinion that could eliminate the statutory employer protection for general contractors in certain circumstances if allowed to stand. The court held that in order to avail itself of the statutory employer defence, a general contractor must do something more than pass the onus of obtaining workers compensation coverage to its subcontractor. General contractors may need to rethink how they provide for workers' compensation coverage in future.

Coalition of states and cities sues EPA over methane emissions from oil and natural gas operations
Sidley Austin LLP
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • USA
  • June 25 2018

A coalition of 14 states and two cities has sued the Environmental Protection Agency and Administrator Scott Pruitt, alleging that the agency had violated a non-discretionary duty under the Clean Air Act to promulgate regulations governing methane emissions from existing sources that produce, process and distribute oil and natural gas.

Merchant solar projects in Portugal: growing interest and challenges
Morais Leitão, Galvão Teles, Soares da Silva & Associados
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • Portugal
  • June 25 2018

With the increasing number of projects being licensed under market rules, renewable energy generators are now faced with energy trading under organised markets, without a traditional power purchase agreement with the off-taker. The new reality of operating without a feed-in tariff is challenging – particularly as regards meeting bankability requirements. However, stakeholders are exploring alternatives.

Pampa Camarones mining project penalised for damage to archaeological site
Montt y Cia SA
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • Chile
  • June 25 2018

The government recently filed a compensation claim for environmental damage against mining company Pampa Camarones. The claim was based on the fact that Pampa Camarones' operations had violated a series of measures that the regional evaluation commission had stipulated to protect a nearby archaeological site. As a result, over 15 hectares of the site were destroyed without the required measures being undertaken to protect its archaeological value.

Updated field development guidance published by OGA
CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
  • Energy & Natural Resources
  • United Kingdom
  • June 25 2018

The Oil and Gas Authority recently released updated guidance on planning and gaining consent to UK Continental Shelf field developments. The guidance is intended to assist those involved in planning a new field development and obtaining the consent required to proceed with a field development plan. The guidance was created with the industry's input to try to achieve consistent and successful high quality and high value projects.

Determining adverse descriptions in technical evaluation reports
Lee and Li Attorneys at Law
  • Intellectual Property
  • Taiwan
  • June 25 2018

Under the Patent Act, utility model patents are examined using a formality examination system; the Taiwan Intellectual Property Office is not required to perform a substantive examination of patentability. However, as patent rights are granted without substantive examination, to prevent patentees from IP rights abuse, the Patent Act stipulates that when exercising a utility model patent, the patentee must not issue a warning without presenting a technical evaluation report.

BLM appeals order blocking Waste Prevention Rule rescission
Sidley Austin LLP
  • Environment & Climate Change
  • USA
  • June 25 2018

The US Bureau of Land Management has filed an appeal with the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to reverse a Northern District of California judge's preliminary injunction staying a final rule to delay compliance dates for the 2016 Waste Prevention Rule. The Waste Prevention Rule imposed methane emission reductions on oil and gas operations on federal and Indian lands.

Bolar and the experimental use exemptions in the United Kingdom
Taylor Wessing
  • Intellectual Property
  • United Kingdom
  • June 25 2018

The exemptions to patent infringement applicable in the United Kingdom to life sciences products are often a source of confusion. This is not least because of the introduction of a third exemption in this area on 1 October 2014. The extent of protection offered by each exemption differs, but to some extent overlaps, and there is only slim guidance from the courts on two of the three.

Liability for payments after company has become insolvent
Graf & Pitkowitz Rechtsanwälte GmbH
  • Insolvency & Restructuring
  • Austria
  • June 22 2018

If a managing director of a company makes payments after a substantive insolvency, they may be liable for damages under the Statute on Limited Liability Companies. Managing a company in a crisis situation requires special diligence and care. In order to avoid unpleasant surprises later on, where possible, the admissibility of envisaged future payments should be checked in advance.

Deductible payments to CFCs can result in exorbitant BEAT
McDermott Will & Emery
  • Corporate Tax
  • USA
  • June 22 2018

A minimum tax has been imposed on domestic corporations with substantial amounts of deductible payments made to related foreign persons, referred to as the 'base erosion and anti-abuse tax' (BEAT). BEAT is particularly onerous if a controlled foreign corporation's income is subject to foreign taxation because, while foreign income taxes can be used as a credit to reduce regular tax liability, no foreign tax credit is permitted to offset the BEAT.

Nothing is certain but death and taxes: Tax Department considers taxation of cryptocurrencies
Montt y Cia SA
  • Corporate Tax
  • Chile
  • June 22 2018

A taxpayer recently requested a ruling from the Tax Department on the treatment of gains from cryptocurrency transactions for income and value added tax purposes, as cryptocurrencies are not specifically regulated in Chile or recognised as legal tender or foreign currency. The department's analysis reflected the broad definition of 'income' in the Income Tax Act and the fact that there is no specific exemption or favourable treatment given to these specific gains.

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