Groundless infringement threats
IP law provides means by which the IP rights may be effectively enforced against infringement. However, the law also has provisions to prevent any person, especially right-owners, from making indiscriminate threats of infringement proceedings against others. Section 106 of the Patents Act in this regard prescribes a mechanism to safe guard interests of receiver of such threat against an indiscriminate use of patent rights to suppress competition. Courts, in such proceedings have to principally decide as to whether legal notice amounts to groundless threat of legal proceedings and whether the person (to whom the notice is served) is entitled to an injunction and damages for such threat. Considering that Copyright Act, 1957, Trade Marks Act, 1999, Design Act, 2000, and Geographical Indications of Goods Act, 1999 also have similar provisions, it is imperative to ensure that the IP rights are being infringed and are valid, before issuing any communication to a person for legal proceedings against infringement...
- Trademark infringement when products involved are different – Single Judge Bench of Delhi High Court observes that under sub-section 29(2) of Trademarks Act, aspect of identity and similarity of respective trademarks cannot be looked into independently of products/services
- Copyrights – Sound recording rights different from literary or musical rights – Division Bench of Bombay High Court dismisses appeal filed against SJ Order granting interim injunction
- Exclusivity over names of Gods – Division Bench of Bombay High Court affirmes SJ Order holding that no rights can be claimed exclusively over word mark “LAXMI”, as it is a common word and the name of a deity
- Territorial jurisdiction of High Court – Effect of business carried through e-commerce website – Delhi High Court
- Patent protection - In an interesting development, a pharma major has transferred patents to a native Indian Tribe in USA in an attempt to make the patent immune from scrutiny under US Patent laws