The Federal Circuit, in a nonprecedential decision, held that claims of a reissue application were properly rejected because they recaptured subject matter surrendered during the original prosecution of U.S. Patent No. 8,282,591 (“the ’591 patent”).
The ’591 patent is directed to an arteriovenous shunt that connects a graft to an artery and passes returned blood through a “single lumen venous outflow catheter” into the right atrium of a patient’s heart. This system reduces the risk of infection, clotting, and hyperplasia compared to systems that remove and return blood through a graft connected to a vein.
On 9 March 2018, Byron Bay brewery Stone & Wood lost an appeal in the Australian Full Federal Court of Appeal to Brunswick based brewer Thunder Road with respect to their respective uses of the word PACIFIC for their rival beers.
Stone & Wood sells craft beer, including its best-selling beer “Pacific Ale”. Thunder Road launched its “Thunder Road Pacific Ale” in 2015, which it renamed “Thunder Road Pacific” later that year following letters of demand from Stone & Wood.
Australia’s “grace period” provisions allow a patent applicant to disclose or use their invention within 12 months before filing a complete patent application in Australia. In an interesting interpretation of those provisions, the Australian Patent Office has found that the grace period applies to whole of contents citations published after a patent application has been filed.
The emergence of “plausibility” as a test for inventive step, sufficiency and industrial applicability represents a significant legal development in Europe in recent years. Now the concept of plausibility has reached Australian shores, with the Australian Patent Office applying it in a test for sufficiency.
Christian Louboutin (Louboutin) has again been successful in a long running opposition proceeding filed by Roland SE (Roland) against its red sole trade mark in the European Union.
Louboutin has faced legal challenges around the world in registering and enforcing its signature red sole on its shoes. In 2010, Louboutin filed a Community Trade Mark application for the below trade mark in class 25 for “high-heeled shoes (except orthopaedic footwear)” (Louboutin Mark):
On 8 June 2015, the Council of the European Union published the final texts of its proposal to amend the Community Trade Mark Regulation (Regulation) and Trade Mark Directive (Directive).
The revised drafts reflect the key issues which have been the subject of significant debate in the last year, including:
- harmonisation of trade mark law and practice between EU member states
- measures to protect brand owners’ rights with respect to counterfeit goods in transit
- cooperation between Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM) and national trade mark offices
- governance and finances of OHIM.
On April 29, 2015, U.S. Register of Copyrights, Maria Pallante, testified to the House Judiciary Committee providing the Copyright Office’s perspective on updates to U.S. copyright law. In addition to recommending a more autonomous Copyright Office and flagging policy issues that warrant further analysis and attention, Ms. Pallante identified eight issues deserving current legislative action:
1. Music Licensing. After undertaking a comprehensive study last year to assess the impact of copyright law on the music marketplace, the Copyright Office recommends
- greater negotiating room for public performance rights while preserving the benefits of collective licensing for smaller actors
- U.S. recognition of a full public performance right for sound recordings
- federal copyright protection for pre-1972 sound recordings.
On January 9, 2015, a decision of the Italian Patent and Trademark Office (Ufficio Italiano Brevetti e Marchi, hereafter ‘UIBM’) rejected an opposition made by Jaguar Land Rover Limited (Land Rover), in order to prevent the registration, in Italy, by China Depend Limited (China Depend) of a figurative trademark. The trademark was formed by two Chinese ideograms corresponding to the sign used in China by Land Rover to identify its activity, which once translated means ‘land’ and ‘tiger’, but allegedly commonly translated into ‘Land Rover’ ( Ideogram Trademark).
Land Rover, owner of the two Italian word trademarks ‘Land Rover’ and ‘Range Rover’ (Land Rover Trademarks), filed an opposition pursuant to Article 12, paragraph 1, letter d) of the Italian Intellectual Property Code setting forth the likelihood of confusion between similar trademarks. In particular, the provision provides that signs cannot be registered as trademarks if, at the date of the registration filing, they are similar or identical to other trademarks previously registered by third parties in the same country or are enjoying protection in the same country.