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Inside Internal Controls

News and discussion on implementing risk management

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Intellectual Property, IP

The utility of recent force majeure amendments to Canadian trademark law

The words “force majeure” do not appear in the Canadian Trademarks Act. However, at least three provisions now afford trademark owners and the Registrar of Trademarks some flexibility in addressing the effects of so-called “acts of God” under Canadian law—events beyond a party’s control which make performance of their obligations impossible. The relevant provisions:

 

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Consuming and creating digital media in the era of COVID-19: Copyright rules to remember

The recent increased activity in the consumption and creation of digital media because of social distancing makes it a prime time for a copyright law refresher.

 

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COVID-19 and electronic contracting

For years, organizations have moved their businesses digital. To consummate transactions and to otherwise engage in contractual activities, organizations have increasingly relied on electronic means of contracting using everything from webwraps and clickwraps (and hybrid variations of these forms of agreements) and electronic documents executed using electronic signatures.

 

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Five significant developments following the June 2019 changes to Canadian trademark law

The last 12 months have been an exciting time in Canadian trademark law. In June 2019, the most significant changes in decades were implemented to Canada’s Trademarks Act and Trademarks Regulations.

 

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Year in review: Five key takeaways from Canadian trademark case law in 2019

2019 was a year to remember in Canadian trademark law primarily because, after a delay of five years, Canada finally implemented the amendments to the Canadian Trademarks Act introduced in 2014.

 

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Significant online defamation damages in Canada — are online platforms immune?‎

If only Canada were to have such clear laws. Here, it is critical for operators of online platforms to understand that this issue remains largely unlegislated and left to the common law; which holds that a person will not be responsible, as a publisher, if the person’s sole participation in the publication of the defamatory material is merely their “innocent” involvement in the purely administrative or mechanical phases of publication.

 

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Exceptional circumstances now required for extensions in trademark examination

On January 17, 2020, the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (“CIPO”) published a new Practice Notice which significantly curtails the availability of extensions of time to respond to Office Actions in trademark examination.

 

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There’s something about the 17th: The tinkering continues with more Canadian trademark practice changes

The Canadian Intellectual Property Office (“CIPO”) recently amended three Practice Notices and a Guidance Document related to applications and registrations for trademarks in Canada. These amendments provide:

 

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Provincial payer quashes attempted drug evergreening strategy

When patents expire on a patented drug product, paving the way for generic competition, the patentee is faced with the challenge of how to replace the revenues that were achieved with the patented product. Ideally, the company’s innovation during the patented product’s life cycle will have led to new products poised to grow as the old patented product’s revenues decline. Often, however, the company’s strategy is to pursue a “product switch,” in which the patented product is replaced with a new product that provides little or no therapeutic improvement but for which no generic competition is imminent.

 

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Interlocutory injunctions in trademark cases: A POWERful tool—when available

As Canadian trademark practitioners know, it has generally been difficult to obtain interlocutory (or interim) injunctions in trademark infringement matters, particularly at the Federal Court of Canada.

 

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Site blocking orders come to Canada: GoldTV.biz

In an important decision released Friday, November 13, 2019, the Federal Court of Canada issued the first Canadian site blocking order against sites that predominantly facilitate copyright infringement.

 

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Copyright or trademark protection? Sometimes, it’s both

In general parlance the terms “copyright”, “trademark”, and “patent” are often incorrectly interchanged, much to the chagrin of IP practitioners. While all three types of IP are very different, they are inextricably linked in many cases.

 

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United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement amendments

On Dec. 10, 2019, Canada, the United States of America, and Mexico agreed to substantial amendments to the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the trade agreement that is slated to replace the long-standing North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

 

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How much does a Canadian patent cost?

Asking how much it costs to get a patent in Canada is a bit like asking how long a piece of string is. The answer, of course, depends on many different factors, but there are a number of general guidelines that can be used to anticipate likely costs that will be incurred over the lifetime of a patent.

 

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Competition Tribunal confirms business justification is the paramount consideration in an abuse of dominance case

Competition law

On October 17, 2019, the Competition Tribunal (Tribunal) rendered its decision in CT-2016-015 Commissioner of Competition v. Vancouver Airport Authority (Decision) [PDF], dismissing the Commissioner of Competition’s (Commissioner) application.

 

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