Total Documents: 15


Designs in the UK

Document No: PUB 20B/15 Posted: 04 March 2016

In 2014, the Government sought views on proposed changes to the Registered Designs Act 1949. The proposal was that the legis­lation be amended to provide registered design owners with the option of marking a product with the address of a website which links the product with the relevant registered design numbers as an alternative way of providing notice of the rights. The Government response to this call for evidence was published in August 2015.

The response document provides a summary of what respondents said about the proposal to introduce the option of webmarking for registered design rights. This document provides a summary of the key points raised by respondents and the Government’s commentary on these issues.

Draft proposal for a revised block exemption for technology transfer agreements and guidelines

Document No: PUB 20L/13 Posted: 23 December 2013

The European Commission launched on 20 February 2013 a public consultation on anti-trust rules on technology licensing. The objective of the consultation was stated as follows:

In the meaning of the EU competition rules, a technology transfer agree­ment is a licensing agree­ment where one party (the licensor) authorises another party or parties, the licen­see(s), to use its technology (patent, know-how, software license) for the production of goods and services.

The rules on how to assess technology transfer agreements are set out in two instruments, the technology transfer block exemption regulation (“TTBER”) and accompanying Guidelines. The TTBER exempts certain categor­ies of licens­ing agreements concluded be­tween companies that have limited market power and that respect certain conditions set out in the TTBER. Such agree­ments are deemed to have no anticompetitive effects or, if they do, the posi­tive effects outweigh the negative ones. The Guidelines provide guidance on the application of the TTBER as well as on the applica­tion of EU com­peti­tion law to tech­nology transfer agreements that fall out­side the safe harbour of the TTBER.

These instruments will expire on 30 April 2014. The Commission has now drafted a proposal for a revised TTBER and Guidelines. The current consultation is seeking stakeholders’ views on this proposal.

Draft European Commission Block Exemption Regulation on R&D Agreements

Document No: PUB 2/11 Posted: 13 February 2012
An item in the December 2010 issue of Trends and Events (pages 6-8) reviewed block exemption regulations (BERs) under Article 101(3) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the Euro­pean Union (TFEU), and in particular the two BERs then most relevant to Federation mem­bers, namely Regulation 772/2004 on technology transfer agreements and Regulation 2659/2000 on research and development (R&D) agreements. The second of these was due to expire at the end of the month; and the item also set out the two key points in the Federation’s submission on the Commission’s draft replacement for 2659/2000.


Developments in the Patentability of Computer Software and Business Method Inventions

Document No: PUB 12/10 Posted: 21 July 2010

Recent years have seen the patentability of software and business methods hotly debated, and not just in academic circles. With protests in the streets of Munich and over a hundred personal and professional opinions on the subject filed by amicus curiae, there can be little doubt as to the public interest in this evolving and controversial issue. With judicial opinions on developments in the laws of Europe and the United States having been published in 2010, it is timely to explore the perspectives and most significant effects.

Draft European Commission Block Exemption Regulation on Research and Development Agreements

Document No: PUB 3/10 Posted: 14 December 2010

Article 101(1) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) iden­ti­fies in general terms classes of agreements that are incompatible with the inter­nal market, subject to the possibility of exemption under Article 101(3), e.g. where the agreement promotes technical or economic progress. If an agreement is “caught” by Article 101(1) but not exempted under Article 101(3), then it is unenforceable.

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