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News

2017

JULY

  • CONGRATULATIONS!
    We congratulate our patent attorney Christoph Straßl on successfully passing the EQE and thereby being admitted as representative before the European Patent Office.
    We are delighted by the news, wish him the very best and continued happiness and success in his profession. We are proud to have him in our team.


JUNE

  • INTERNATIONAL PATENT PROSECUTION AND PRACTICE SEMINAR
    IN CHICAGO
    On September 14 to 15, 2017 we will present our Seminar in cooperation with WIPO at John Marshall Law School. More details will follow soon.

  • THE GERMAN CONSTITUTIONAL COURT REVIEWS THE IMPLEMENTING LEGISLATION FOR THE UNITARY PATENT PACKAGE

    As recently made public by news media, the German Constitutional Court asked the German Federal President already on April 3, 2017, at first orally, then in writing, not to sign (off on) the implementing legislation for the Unitary Patent Package, due to a constitutional complaint by a private person.

    The reason for this is that the German Constitutional Court needs more time to consider the constitutional complaint which suggests that it is not without any merit from the outset, as is the case with the majority of constitutional complaints by private persons. Due to this request of the German Constitutional Court, the German implementing legislation for the Unified Patent Court (UPC) and Unitary Patent (UP), which should have been put into force this year, will be on hold.

    This unexpected delay of the German ratification process as well as the unexpected outcome of the UK snap elections of June 8, 2017 render the further developments concerning the UP & UPC project questionable.

    In fact, this move of the German Constitutional Court opens up a new scenario which, at best, further delays the operational start of the UPC system but also heats up speculations that the UP & UPC project may eventually fail, due to constitutional issues of Germany.

    We will keep you updated on any further developments.

  • START OF UPC FURTHER DELAYED

    On June 7, 2017, the Preparatory Committee of the Unified Patent Court (UPC) published a statement announcing that the timetable for the start of the UPC Agreement provisional application period and target date for entry into operation of the UPC, previously envisaged for 1 December 2017, will have to be postponed.

    The reason for this further delay of the envisaged start of the UPC is that some Member States have not yet agreed to be bound by the UPC Agreement’s Protocol on Provisional Application. (The Protocol on Provisional Application allows various parts of the Agreement to come into force early and the ‘provisional application phase’ to start, during which final preparations for the start of the UPC system, such as recruitment of judges, can be completed.)

    Following last week’s meeting of the EU Competitiveness Council, Commissioner Bieńkowska stated that three more Member States are required to complete steps to allow for the provisional application period to commence. The Protocol will come into force the day after 13 states (including France, Germany and the UK) have either ratified or informed the ‘depositary’ that they have parliamentary approval to ratify the UPC Agreement; and have consented to be bound by the Protocol. Eight Member States already meet this requirement (Belgium, Denmark, France, Finland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and Sweden); and both Germany and the UK have each consented to the Protocol. Austria, Bulgaria, Malta and Portugal have each ratified the UPC Agreement but have not yet consented to the Protocol.
    Though the Prep Committee did not provide a new target date at this stage, it will publish a new timetable as soon as possible.

    We will keep you posted on this.

MAy

  • POSSIBLE DELAY OF THE UP & UPC PROJECT DUE TO SNAP ELECTIONS IN UK ON JUNE 8, 2017

    On April 18, 2017, British Prime Minister Theresa May announced a snap general election for June 8, 2017 (instead of regular elections in May 2020).

    On May 3, 2017, Prime Minister May informed the Queen about the dissolution of the Parliament which is the first step onwards to snap elections.

    What does this mean for the upcoming UP&UPC?

    This announcement will affect the current timetable for the Provisional Application Phase (PAP), previously expected to begin in the middle of May 2017 as the UK already signed the protocol to implement the PAP. Below, we would like to point to possible developments with regard to the UP&UPC project resulting from the snap elections in UK on June 8, 2017, as collected from news reports and information by British colleagues:

    With the announcement of the election, a political convention in the UK called “Purdah” came into effect. This pre-election period, specifically the time between an announced election and the final election results, affects civil servants by particularly preventing central and local governments from making announcements about any government initiatives (such as legislative changes) which could be seen to influence the election or favor a party or candidate in the forthcoming election.

    As a result, the statutory instrument (brief: SI) for the UPC Protocol on the Privileges and Immunities (PP&I) was not laid before Parliament and will now not be laid until the election is over and the new Parliament begins to work. The next steps after the laying out are a debate and an affirmative resolution in both Houses of Parliament after 42 days. Further, a similar Statutory Instrument (SI) will be laid before the Scottish Assembly, again with an affirmative vote after 54 days. Thereafter, either Prime Minister Theresa May or Foreign Minister Boris Johnson have to formally sign the instrument of ratification to come into effect.

    Therefore, there will be no process with regard to the UP&UPC project until the snap election took place on June 8, 2017, and particularly the constitution of the new Parliament is finished. It may hence be around the end of June 2017 or even later before said SI for the UPC PP&I can be laid before the new Parliament, thereby triggering the 42 days and afterwards the 54 days with a similar SI before the Scottish Assembly.

    For this reason, at the moment nobody in the UK government will give an estimate of when ratification will take place. Additionally, the regular summer recess in UK takes place around July 20 to September 5, 2017 so that ratification does not seem probable before the middle of October 2017.

    This would mean that the Sunrise Period (previously estimated to start in September 2017) and the Unified Patent Court starting date (December 2017) will be delayed. However, as long as there is no updated statement on the position of UK, the Preparatory Committee does not update any estimates in this respect.

    Summarizing the above, although there seems to be no change in policy with the UK government, i.e. they will ratify, a further delay of at least one month up to several months until early 2018 will have to be expected until the UPC will start its operation.

  • EUROPEAN INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY SEMINAR FREISING
    For more details about our Seminar, from October 3 to 7, 2016 in Freising,
    please click here...

MARCH

FEBRUARY

  • EPO BOARDS OF APPEAL: RELOCATION AND APPOINTMENT OF NEW PRESIDENT

    The Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation has recently announced the appointment of Carl Josefsson as the new first President of the Boards of Appeal.Mr Josefsson, who is currently Senior Judge of Appeal at the Svea Court of Appeal in Stockholm, is expected to take up his duties with effect from 1 March 2017. Mr Josefsson was jointly proposed by the Board of Appeals Committee of the Administrative Council and the President of the EPO. The President of the Boards of Appeal will preside the Boards of Appeal Unit administratively and judicially.

    The new role of President of the BoA was created as a result of the substantial institutional reforms adopted in June 2016 in an effort to emphasis the autonomy and efficiency of the Boards of Appeal and to strengthen the appeal systems of the EPO as a whole.

    With the appointment of the new President, the Administrative Council has paved the way to shift essential administrative functions in relation to the EPO’s Court to the President of the Board of Appeals. Instead of being integrated into the administration of the EPO, the new President will be directly responsive to the Administrative Council so as to provide a link between the Council and the Boards of Appeal. Mr Josefsson will equally serve as the President of the Enlarged Board of Appeals.

    Apart from appointing Mr Josefsson as the new President, the Administrative Council has also approved the relocation of the BoA Unit to Haar, a suburb of Munich located 12km east of Munich Centre, which is to take place in the summer of 2017. The scheduled move should emphasis the spatially separation between the Court and the granting authority (European Patent Office). However, with the move from the Centre of Munich to Haar, the new location will be not as convenient for attorneys and clients, in particular those who come from abroad, who have to attend to oral hearings before the Boards of Appeal, as the old one.

JANUARY

  • WORLD TRADEMARK REVIEW (WTR) 1000 reported:

"Kuhnen & Wacker continues to make waves on the German trademark scene. Founded in 1974 in Freising, the nimble boutique has consistently beefed up its service with major hires and a state-of-the-art filing system which guarantees clients swift responses and instantaneous access to their documents. Clearance searches and complex prosecution matters are strong suits. Christian Thomas dispenses “strong strategic counsel in a short timeframe and at a reasonable price”. He has in-depth licensing, merchandising and anti-counterfeiting expertise."

(WTR 1000, the world's only independent multimedia publication dedicated exclusively to reporting on trademark issues for in-house and private pracitioners internationally)

2016

DECEMBER

OCTOBER

SEPTEMBER

  • EUROPEAN PATENT PRACTICE SEMINAR CHICAGO
    In cooperation with the John Marshall Law School
    Chicago, November 1 to 2, 2016
    Please register now

  • FULL DAY SEMINAR WASHINGTON, D.C.
    IP Update - Developments in Europe
    In cooperation with the Licensing Executives Society
    For more details about our Seminar on November 4, 2016 in Washington, D.C.,
    please click here.

AUGUST

  • PATENT PRACTICE SEMINAR TAIWAN
    For more details about our Seminar on September 7, 2016 in Taiwan, please click here.

JUNE

  • THE IMPACT OF BREXIT ON YOUR IP RIGHTS

    On June 23, 2016 the people of the United Kingdom have voted to leave the European Union

    This will have no immediate effect on any IP rights but may lead to changes after and possibly during the process of withdrawal (cf. Article 50 of the European Union Treaty).
    The present vote now triggers the process of said withdrawal and the UK now has a minimum of two years to complete the exit process. As the Brexit is an unprecedented process in the EU, it is not possible to predict how long this will actually take and the process may possibly take many years, according to some of our colleagues in the UK.

    European Patent Applications and Patents
    The Brexit does not affect European patent applications and patents as the European Patent Office is not a EU body. The European Patent Convention (EPC) already now includes non-EU countries and at present patents are validated on grant in individual countries, which will be continued.

    EU Trademarks and Registered Designs
    For the time being, these trademarks and designs covering the UK will remain in place and will be enforceable in the UK until new provisions are put in place to give them a continued, or corresponding, protection in the UK.

    Unified Patent Court (UPC)
    In view of the Brexit, it remains to be seen what will happen in this respect. No prediction can be made at this point of time as the UPC has not yet come into effect and the agreement has not been ratified by all member states of the EU. Changes in the agreement may be necessary.

    Conclusion and Outlook
    We would like to assure you that no action is required at this time in connection with the Brexit. We will contact you as soon as we have more definite information and if any action will become necessary that may affect your IP rights.

  • EUROPEAN PATENT PRACTICE SEMINAR CHICAGO
    For more details about our Seminar, from November 1 to 2, 2016 in Chicago, please click here.

MAY

  • EUROPEAN PATENT PRACTICE SEMINAR CHICAGO
    From November 1 to 2, 2016, we will presented our Seminar in cooperation with the John Marshall Law School in Chicago. More details will follow soon.

APRIL

  • PUBLICATION BY RAINER K. KUHNEN
    Huawei v ZTE – ECJ sets framework for injunctive relief regarding SEPs, Patents in Europe, IAM Magazine
  • EUROPEAN INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY SEMINAR FREISING
    For more details about our Seminar, from October 3 to 7, 2016 in Freising, please click here.
  • EUROPEAN INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY SEMINAR JAPAN
    For more details about our Seminar, from June 7 to 10, 2016 in Japan, please click here.

MArch

  • EUROPEAN UNION INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OFFICE (EUIPO)
  • The amended European Union Trade Mark Regulation No. 2015/2424 will enter into force as of March 23, 2016. It comprises several changes which will impact the owners of Community trademarks (CTM) which – as of that date – will be renamed “European Union Trade Mark (EUTM)”.

    OHIM will be called the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO).

    Further changes relate to:


    Fee structure

    The main change is a single fee for each class for application and renewal fees. There will also be reductions in the renewal, opposition, cancellation and appeal fees.


    Number of Classes
    Current
    Application
    Fee
    New
    Application
    Fee
    Current
    Renewal
    Fee
    New
    Renewal
    Fee
    1st class € 900 for up
    to three
    classes
    € 850 € 1,350 for up
    to three
    classes
    € 850
    2nd class € 900 for up
    to three
    classes
    € 50 € 1,350 for up
    to three
    classes
    € 50
    3rd class € 900 for up
    to three
    classes
    € 150 € 1,350 for up
    to three
    classes
    € 150
    4th and all
    additional
    classes
    € 150 per
    class
    € 150 per
    class
    € 400 per
    class
    € 150 per
    class


    Classification of goods and services

    Owners of CTMs filed before June 22, 2012 and those wishing to file new CTMs should be aware of the following:

    It is the intention of OHIM to keep the lists of goods and services as specific as possible in order to meet the new requirement for “clarity and precision”.

    Therefore, owners of CTMs filed before the above date which include a complete class heading will have the opportunity to modify their lists of goods and/or services by filing a Declaration before September 24, 2016, stating that the CTM's class heading was intended to cover all the goods and/or services in that class.


    Types of trade marks

    The filing of non-traditional marks may become easier as the requirement for a graphical representation no longer exists. The representation of the sign will be permitted in any appropriate form.


    New European Union Certification Mark

    A new European Union Certification Mark will be introduced on October 1, 2017, allowing CTM owners to protect certification marks on an EU-wide basis.


    International Registrations designating the EU

    IRs will have a shorter way to registration because the opposition period will start one month after the date of publication instead of the current six months. The actual opposition period remains at three months.

    You can find the amended regulation under the following link:

    https://oami.europa.eu/ohimportal/en/eu-trade-mark-regulation

    If you have any questions in connection with the above, please do not hesitate to contact us at any time.
    Information Download

February

  • EUROPEAN INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY SEMINAR JAPAN
    We will hold our Seminars in Japan on the following days: June 7, 2016 in Nagoya, June 8, 2016 in Osaka and June 9, 2016 in Tokyo. More details will follow soon.
  • EUROPEAN PATENT PRACTICE SEMINAR CHICAGO
    On November 1 and 2, we will again present our European Patent Practice Seminar in cooperation with and at John Marshall Law School in Chicago. More details will follow soon.
  • EUROPEAN INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY SEMINAR FREISING
    From October 3 to 7, 2016 we will present our European Intellectual Property Seminar in Freising. More details will follow soon.

2015

  • October 2015: New Publication: Dr. Christian Thomas, Taking a ride on the Birthday Train, "iam", Intellectual Asset Management Yearbook 2016, www.iam-magazine.com. Download...
  • MEDICA 2015: K&W will again be present at the MEDICA trade fair from November 16 to 19, 2015.
  • We are pleased to announce that patent attorney candidates Christoph Straßl, Dr. techn. Ulrich Wagner and Jan Ksienzyk were sworn in as German Patent Attorneys and would like to wish our new collegues much success and happiness in their profession.
  • Our European Intellectual Property Seminar 2015 in Freising was held in October 5 to 9, 2015.
  • May 2015: New Publication: Dr. Christian Thomas, Effective use of Community designs - Chinese Edition, Intellectual Asset Management magazine "iam", www.iam-magazine.com - 2015. Download...
  • Patent Attorney Rainer Kuhnen
  • January 2015: Morocco recognises European patents as national patents starting on 1 March 2015. Read more...

2014

  • December 2014: Advocate General Yves Bot: Spain’s actions against the European regulations implementing enhanced cooperation in the area of the creation of unitary patent protection must be dismissed. For further details see here...
  • November 2014: New Publication: Dr. Christian Thomas, Effective use of Community designs, Intellectual Asset Management magazine "iam", www.iam-magazine.com - Yearbook 2015. Download...
  • November 2014: New Publication: Rainer K. Kuhnen, The proposed structure of the Unified Patent Court system in Europe, Intellectual Asset Management magazine "iam", www.iam-magazine.com - Patents in Europe 2014/2015 Edition. Download...
  • MEDICA 2014: K&W will again be present at the MEDICA trade fair from November 12 to 15, 2014.
  • May 2014: This years European Intellectual Property Seminars in Japan are going to be held in May. The seminar in Tokyo will be presented on Monday, May 19, 2014 and in Nagoya on Thursday, May 22, 2014. See details here...

2013

  • New Publication: Rainer K. Kuhnen, Unitary patent and Unified Patent Court: the proposed framework, Intellectual Asset Management magazine "iam", www.iam-magazine.com - Patents in Europe 2013/2014 Edition. Download...
  • New Publication: Dr. Michael Topf, Amendments to Patent Act and other IP laws on the way, Intellectual Asset Management, October 2013. Download...
  • From October 29 to 30, 2013 we will again present our European xIntellectual Property Seminar at the John Marshall Law School in Chicago. See details here...
  • New Publication: Detlef von Ahsen, Upcoming changes to the Design Act, Intellectual Asset Management, August 2013. Download...
  • India Joins the International Trademark System July 8, 2013. Please read more...
  • New Publication: Dr. Christian Thomas, IP TRANSLATOR: earthquake or tremor? Intellectual Asset Management March/April 2013. Download...
  • European Patent Practice Seminar at The University of Texas School of Law (UT Law CLE), Austin, from April 30 to May 1, 2013.
  • February 2013: Unified Patent Court agreement signed. Read more...
  • January 2013: We are pleased to announce a new partner as of January 1, 2013: Our experienced colleague Detlef von Ahsen of our mechanical department has become partner of the firm. Prior to being named partner, he has been an associate in our team.
  • January 2013: After his resignation as of one of the managing partners of the firm, we are pleased to announce that our esteemed founding partner Paul-Alexander Wacker, turning 70 in August of this year, continues his work for the firm as of counsel.

2012

  • European Parliament approves EU unitary patent rules. Read more...
  • Advocate General Bot proposes that the Court dismiss the actions brought by Spain and Italy against the Council’s decision authorising enhanced cooperation in the area of the unitary patent. Read the press release.
  • New Publication: Dr. Michael Topf, Key Essentials in European Patent Claim Drafting, WORLD INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
    REPORT, December 2012. Read more...
  • New Publication: Paul-Alexander Wacker, Key considerations in transnational patent litigation, Intellectual Asset Management magazine "iam", www.iam-magazine.com - IP Value 2013 Edition. Read more...
  • European IPR Helpdesk Newsletter: Important changes for PCT applicants. Read more...
  • New Publication: Dr. Christian Thomas, Border seizure in the European Union – a universal legal tool, World Trademark Review, August/September 2012. Download...
  • After 18 years of negotiations, Russia will become a member of WTO beginning from August 22, 2012. As a result of Russia’s WTO accession ratification, the Russian IP legal framework will have to comply with the TRIPS standards. Here... an official statement of Director-General Pascal Lamy of WTO.
  • Amending Rule 53 of the Implementing Regulations to the European Patent Convention. See details.
  • EU Summit paves the way for the Unitary Patent: Historic Breakthrough in 40 year debate. See details. Read official conclusion.
  • New Publication: Dr. Christian Thomas, Border seizure in the European Union – a universal legal tool, IAM-Magazine, May/June 2012. Download...
  • European Patent Practice Seminar - An In-Depth Seminar
    Covering Recent Developments: The Seminar in cooperation with the John Marshall Law School in Chicago is going to be held in fall 2013.
  • Press release of March 1, 2012: Fast track to patent - PPH Pilot Program between the UK Intellectual Property Office and the German Patent and Trademark Office. As of today, patent applicants can request an accelerated examination of their application. The agreement concerning the so-called Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) was signed by both Offices on December 16, 2011 in Munich. For more information. Read more...
  • New Publication: Dr. Christian Thomas, The protection of 3D trademarks in Europe. Read more...
  • New Publication: Paul-Alexander Wacker, Trademark industry in Germany, CorpINTL - International Sector Panel Feature - January 2012 Edition. Read more...