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News:

本所日前於2010年柏林消費電子展(IFA201093日至98)順利為我國參展廠商取得德國法院之假處分命令並加以執行,於商展之第一天即將侵權產品全部扣押,成功阻止侵權產品之展出。其後並代理客戶與侵權產品歐洲經銷商協商,促使其停止販售侵權產品並與本所客戶洽商採購事宜。[09.09.2010]

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研討會 :

  • 2008 年 1 月 8 日、 9 日、 10 日外貿協會與本所合辦「德國智慧財產權及合約實務研討會」(地點:新竹、台中、高雄)

 

European unitary patent - 歐盟建立新的歐洲單一專利制度與集中管轄法庭

 

2012629日歐盟各會員國終於就討論多年之European unitary patent制度達成共識,新制度主要係建立在現有的歐洲專利制度(EPC)之上,但簡化及統一專利核准後之程序;依據新制,未來專利權人無須於各個EPC會員國進行國家階段之程序(validation),亦無須提供各國官方語言之翻譯,而年費未來亦直接繳納給EPC主管機關即可,無需於各個會員國分別繳納。此制度實施後,不但將便於專利權人管理其專利,亦可減少分別委任各國代理人繳納年費之費用。惟西班牙及義大利已決定不參與此新制度,亦即此二國之申請案仍須依據目前之方式進行國家階段之程序、提供官方語言之翻譯、及分別向此二國主管機關繳納年費。

 

更重要的是,歐盟將就新的歐盟專利設立集中審理爭議案件之法庭,此法庭設立後,權利人未來即無分別於各個歐盟國家進行專利爭議訴訟,可簡化解決專利爭議之訴訟程序,並可大幅減少於各國分別進行訴訟所衍生之高額費用。經過許久之討論,各會員國目前同意該專利法庭之本庭(central division)設於巴黎,並於慕尼黑及倫敦設有分庭(branch),前者專門處理機械工程案件,後者則處理醫藥相關案件。同樣的,西班牙及義大利已決定不參加此制度,故權利人未來於此二國執行專利權時,可能仍需面對訴訟曠日廢時、難以尋得通曉英文且配合度高之訴訟律等常見的困難。

 

上述之新制度預計將於74日經歐洲議會表決通過,並由相關會員國簽署,據了解,因各會員國已達成共識,故前述程序應皆可於2012年完成,且預計2014年即可有第一個依據此新制度核准之專利產生。

 

(2012 July 02)

EPO 調整官方規費

歐洲專利局(European Patent Office)將於201241日起調整官方規費,201241日當日及其後須繳納之費用,皆適用新的費率。於新費率 生效適用後仍依據舊費率繳納官方規費者,倘於EPO要求補正後2個月內補足費用,則視為已於期限內繳費。

 

EPO FEES

Old

New

Filing fee (online)

105

115

Additional page fee (for each page more than 35 page)

13

14

EPO search fee

1,105

1,165

Designation fee

525

555

Renewal fees:

 

 

3rd year

420

445

4th year

525

555

5th year

735

775

6th year

945

995

7th year

1,050

1,105

8th year

1,155

1,215

9th year

1,260

1,325

for the 10th and each subsequent year

1,400

1,495

Examination fee

1,480,00

1,555

Grant fee

830

875

claims fee or the 16th and each subsequent claim

200

225

 

申請歐盟商標之費用大幅調降約 40%

歐盟於 2009 年 3 月 31 日決議調降歐盟商標申請案之官方費用。亦即未來申請人僅需於申請時給付一次官方規費,於商標公告期滿後,無需再繳納「領證費」即可完成登記,預計此一變革亦將縮短完成歐盟商標申請及登記所需之時間。

自 2009 年 5 月 1 日起,歐盟商標之官方規費(申請費加計領証費),將自目前之 1,750 歐元調降為 1,050 歐元;倘係以網路提出申請,官方規費將自目前之 1,600 歐元調降為 900 歐元,調幅高達 40% 左右 。

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德國檢警機關於 2008 年 CeBIT 會場大舉進行搜索扣押

2008 年 3 月 5 日一早,三名檢察官率領 183 名便衣警察進入德國漢諾威電子展( CeBIT )的會場 , 對 51 家參展廠商的攤位進行搜索,並扣押部份涉及專利侵權之展品;被波及者包 括 24 家中國廠商、 12 家台灣廠商、 8 家德國廠商,其餘則為香港、波蘭 、 荷蘭以及南韓之廠商。本次檢警之搜索扣押行動係依據義大利公司 S.I.SV.EL. 之聲請所發動,而 S.I.SV.EL 於此種國際性商展上,就專利爭議案件採取強烈之刑事手段,已經不是第一次,該公司於 2007 年亦曾分別於 CeBIT 及柏林消費電子展( IFA )採取同樣之行動。許多其他的專利權人也已經注意到動用刑事程序之優勢,倘德國法院、檢察機關之態度不改變,預計未來幾年內,專利侵權之刑事程序可能會逐漸取代過去一般所採用之民事程序,成為專利權人主張權利之第ㄧ選擇,而檢警人員也可能會變成德國商展的常客。

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New German law relieves administrative obligations of small and medium business [12/07/2006]

The German parliament has passed a new law ("Mittelstandsentlastungsgesetz"), which will relief small and medium business from certain administrative and documentary burdens. For example, after this law takes effect on 1 January 2007, the general bookkeeping obligation will only apply to business having a turnover exceeding 500,000 Euro (instead of the current threshold of 350,000 Euro) in the preceding calendar year. Furthermore, the simplified invoice form will apply to payments up to 150 Euro (instead of the current ceiling of 100 Euro).

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German VAT increases to 19% in 2007

On May 20, 2006 the German Parliament decided on the long-discussed issue of raising the VAT rate, which is currently 16%. Beginning from January 1, 2007, most of the goods sold and services provided within Germany will be subject to a VAT of 19 %.

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Federal Supreme Court (“BGH”) partially canceled FIFA's Football World Cup 2006 trademarks

A few weeks prior to the beginning of the Football World Cup 2006, which is organized by th e Federation Internationale de Football Association ( “FIFA”), the highest German court rendered a decision partially canceling FIFA's German registered trademarks “FUSSBALL WM 2006”(“football world championship 2006” in German) and “WM 2006” (“world championship 2006” in German) on grounds that these trademarks are descriptive and lack of distinctiveness.

In year 2002, about 4 years before the Football World Cup 2006 in Germany , FIFA registered and obtained, among others, German trademarks for “FUSSBALL WM 2006” and both EU and German trademarks for “WM 2006” in all categories of products and services. In 2003 cancellation proceedings against FIFA's EU and German trademarks were respectively initiated on the basis that these trademarks are descriptive and that FIFA acted in bad faith when filing the relevant trademark applications.

During the EU cancellation proceedings, FIFA's EU trademark “WM 2006” was initially sustained. Nevertheless, the appeal proceedings is still pending.

Different from the EU trademark, FIFA's German trademarks were partially cancelled by German Patent and Trademark Office in 2004. FIFA filed an appeal against such decision with the Federal Patent Court (the competent court for such cases) and the court ruled that these marks are descriptive for certain products and services related to this event, for example, sport goods and products, shoes and clothing, travel arrangements, entertainment, food and drinks services etc. On ground of this, the court cancelled FIFA's said trademarks with respect to the above-mentioned products and services. Appeal was then filed with the Federal Supreme Court against this decision. The Federal Supreme Court recently rendered its decision and extended the scope of cancellation with respect to “FUSSBALL WM 2006” to all goods and services in direct relation to the football world championship due to the mark's descriptive nature and the lack of distinctiveness. As to “WM 2006”, the Federal Supreme Court sustained the partial-cancellation decision of the Federal Patent Court and with respect to the un-cancelled part of the trademark, the Federal Supreme Court referred the case back to the Federal Patent Court for further examination of whether the trademark is descriptive for other goods and services. The Federal Supreme Court's decision is final and conclusive.

The currently contradict results of the cancellation of FIFA's EU and German trademarks has led to an ironic situation that since FIFA's EU trademark is still effective in all member states including Germany, the “gaps” of the partially cancelled German trademark “WM 2006” is filled up by the corresponding EU trademark. The use of “WM 2006” in Germany is despite of the Federal Supreme Court's decision still subject to FIFA's authorization.

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European Court loosened the requirements for dispatching non-EU national employees to Germany

According to EU Treaty, companies in any EU member state are allowed to send their employees to other member states for provision of services without obtaining work permits for such employees. This also applies to employees who are non-EU national; although residence permit / visa is still required for these non-EU national employees.

In Germany , in order to obtain the aforesaid residence permit (which is issued in the form of visa), certain requirements shall be met. One of such requirement was that the non-EU national employees must have been employed by that EU company, which dispatches the employee to Germany , for over 12 months. Due to this requirement, the flexibility for the employer to re-allocate its manpower is limited.

In January 2006, the European Court of Justice ruled in a case (No. C-244/04) that the above-mentioned requirement was in violation of the EU Treaty. The court requested that Germany shall issue residence permit / visa on ground of the EU employers' simple declaration. According to this decision, the previous requirements of a prior employment period of 12 months and the provision of employment agreement shall be lifted. The loosened requirements relating to dispatching non-EU national employees to Germany allow EU employers more room to decide on an appropriate and cost-saving human resource plan.

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