IP Connections

Patent ownership issues: making sure you own what you think you own

For many companies, working with people outside the organization, such as contract workers, independent consultants, joint development partners and even customers, is a necessary part of developing a new product or service. This article highlights three different circumstances where patent ownership issues can arise when working with outside parties and provides suggestions to address these issues.

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Thirsty for some BEER BEER? Drawing the line between a registrable trademark and a descriptive trademark

In a decision rendered by the Canadian Trademarks Opposition Board, the issue of whether the name of one's goods in duplicate can be registered has resurfaced. Known in linguistics as a "contrastive reduplication," repetition alone may not overcome the challenges to obtaining a registration.

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Reinventing the wheel, and other patents for improvements

In some cases, it may be possible to patent improvements, even when the basic subject matter of the invention is already very well known. Sometimes a valid patent can be issued where the only change in the subject matter is how a known substance may be used.

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Canada and the duty of candour: Corlac Inc v. Weatherford Canada Ltd., 2011 FCA 228

In recent years, the question of whether there exists in Canada some form of a general duty of "good faith" on patent applicants — and, if so, the scope of that duty — has been the subject of significant judicial scrutiny. The Federal Court of Appeal has now had occasion to examine the issue and has significantly limited the scope of the duty of good faith in Canada.

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RECENT DEVELOPMENTS IN BRIEF

Copyright issue over "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer" lasts longer than Christmas
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Lady Gaga disputes domain name registration
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Leon's Furniture free to collect driver's licence and licence plate numbers
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Trademarks Office publishes new acceptable wares
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RANKINGS AND RECOGNITIONS

Smart & Biggar/ Fetherstonhaugh achieves top ranking in The Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada
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Smart & Biggar/ Fetherstonhaugh recognized in the LEXPERT® Guide to the Leading US/Canada Cross-border Litigation Lawyers in Canada, 2011 edition
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Smart & Biggar/ Fetherstonhaugh tops the rankings in Who's Who Legal: Canada 2011
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DISCLAIMER

The preceding is intended as a timely update on Canadian intellectual property law. To request a copy of any decision, paper or legislative document, or for more detailed information or to make suggestions, kindly contact an author of the relevant article or Keltie R. Sim. The contents of this newsletter are informational only and do not constitute legal or professional advice. To obtain such advice, please communicate with our offices directly. To join the IP Connections mailing list, be removed from the mailing list or make changes to contact information, please send an email to ipconnections@smart-biggar.ca.

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