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German High Court Ruling Sets Standard for FRAND Negotiations

In the written decision in Sisvel International S.A. v. Haier Deutschland GmbH, Germany’s highest court—the Cartel Senate of the German Federal Court of Justice (“FCJ”)—held that, during pre-suit negotiations, before a patent expires, implementers of standard-essential patents (SEPs) must clearly and unequivocally declare their willingness to conclude a license agreement on fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory (“FRAND”) terms. If they do not, the FCJ held, those implementers may not be able to hold an SEP-holder liable in Europe for anticompetitive behavior. The Court also provided guidance on the obligations of an SEP holder to avoid abuse of dominance charges, including in the context of making a demand for a worldwide SEP portfolio license. Ultimately, this decision provides important guidance to both patentees and putative infringers about the steps necessary to avoid abuse of dominance allegations and invoke rights to a FRAND license in Germany.

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Changes in EPO Divisional Deadlines – Fees Announced


Time to Read: 1 minutes Practices: Patent Strategy

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Following its previous announcement to repeal the 24-month limit on filing divisional applications, on December 13, 2013 the European Patent Office (EPO) announced an updated schedule of fees for filing European patent applications, on or after April 1, 2014. The attached table summarizes the total filing fees for applications filed electronically after that date. As indicated, an increasingly higher fee is applied to subsequent divisional applications filed after a 1st generation divisional application.

Application Type

Filing Fee (Euro)

European Patent application

120

1st generation divisional application

120

generation divisional application

330

3rd generation divisional application

540

4th generation divisional application

750

5th and subsequent generation divisional application

960

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