The Kat watches Gat
Tomorrow the European Court of Justice gives its preliminary ruling in the long-awaited reference from the Oberlandesgericht Düsseldorf in Case C-4/03 GAT, Gesellschaft für Antriebstechnik mbH & Co. KG against LuK Lamellen und Kupplungsbau Beteiligungs KG. At stake is the answer to the following question:
"Is Article 16(4) of the Convention on Jurisdiction and the Enforcement of Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters ("the Brussels Convention") to be interpreted as meaning that the exclusive jurisdiction conferred by that provision on the courts of the Contracting State in which the deposit or registration of a patent has been applied for, has taken place or is under the terms of an international convention deemed to have taken place only applies if proceedings (with erga omnes effect) are brought to declare the patent invalid or are proceedings deemed to be concerned with the validity of patents within the meaning of the aforementioned provision where the defendant in a patent infringement action or the claimant in a declaratory action to establish that a patent is not infringed pleads that the patent is invalid or a nullity and that there is also no patent infringement for that reason, irrespective of whether the court seised of the proceedings considers the plea to be substantiated or unsubstantiated and of when the plea is raised during the course of the proceedings".The IPKat will do his best to bring you the answer, together with some comment - but bear this in mind: the Advocate General's Opinion was delivered on 16 September 2004 and it's still only available in nine of the European Union's official languages (excluding English).
The GAT case so far: click here for comments from Morrison & Foerster, Marks & Clerk, Lawdit, R. G. C. Jenkins and Wragge.
More punishment for Portugal?
Last week in Case C-53/05 the European Court of Justice ruled that, in effectively exempting its entire public sector from the requirement to pay public lending right, Portugal had failed to implement Directive 92/100 on copyright lending and rental right (see IPKat blog here).
Tomorrow, in Case C-61/05, there's more of the same. These two cases were considered together by Advocate General Sharpston and it seems unusual to split them out again for the ruling.