Welcome to your Retail & Consumer monthly news round-up. This newsletter focuses on key news and updates for retail and consumer-facing businesses around the world.

At the end of the newsletter, you can also find details of some of our upcoming events, which we think might be of interest to you and your team.

Please get in touch, or visit our webpage for more information about Bird & Bird's Retail & Consumer Group.

In this newsletter:


Poland: Changes required to your Work Regulations or Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), if you want to monitor your employees

As of 25 May 2018, every employer in Poland that applies any form of employee monitoring must adjust their internal regulations.

Depending on the size of your organisation and the form of employee monitoring the scope of adjustment and actual monitoring options may differ. However, each time the purpose, scope and form of monitoring requires detailed regulations, taking into account the new statutory restrictions.     

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Amendment of the Danish Act on Posted Workers

On 24 May 2018, the parties of the Danish Parliament have adopted an amendment to the Act on posted workers relating to the requirement for notifying the Register of Foreign Service Providers (RUT).     

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Intellectual Property

Brand protection in the global marketplace

In 1873, Jules Verne famously wrote of circumnavigating the world "in 80 days". Today, a brand goes around the world with the click of a mouse. Globalisation has brought exciting opportunities for businesses expanding into overseas markets, but it has also caused a multitude of challenges to brand protection. Whereas goods used to be separated by geographical barriers and had to be browsed in a store, today they sit barely a "window" apart - in a browser. 

This article highlights some key issues for brand owners to consider as they venture into the global marketplace.   

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Singapore: when passing off is enough to successfully oppose a trade mark

Singapore's Intellectual Property Office decides that a foreign brand owner with no earlier trade mark registration or recognition of its brand being "well known" in Singapore can rely on "passing off" to prevent another trader from registering the same brand in Singapore.

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Important Brexit fallout for EU Customs enforcement - the Commission states its position 

Having secured the appropriate intellectual property right protection in the EU, often the front line in the battle against counterfeit and copycat products flooding into the EU, often from China, is Customs enforcement. EC Regulation 608/2013 (the “Customs Regulation”) allows an IP right holder to apply to Customs authorities throughout the EU asking that they search for and detain goods entering (or indeed leaving) the EU which are suspected of infringing the rights holder’s trade marks, designs, copyright or patents.

In the event that a detention is made, the party responsible for the detained goods will very often consent to their destruction (or such consent will be assumed), meaning that the issue is resolved quickly and inexpensively. Only if the party objects to destruction will court proceedings be needed to determine infringement. Because of this, Customs enforcement offers the rights holder a cost effective means of stopping large quantities of infringing goods from ever getting on to the market in the EU in the first place.

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Cartier International v BT and another: UK Supreme Court rules costs of website-blocking orders do not have to be paid by internet service providers

The UK Supreme Court has ruled that the costs for blocking access to websites selling counterfeit products do not have to be paid by internet service providers (ISPs). When a website-blocking injunction is obtained against an ISP, as an innocent intermediary, to prevent the use of its facilities by wrongdoers for unlawful purposes, the IP rights-holders whose commercial interests are being protected cannot look for a contribution to their legal costs from anyone but the infringers.

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Real Estate

Moratorium on the granting of licenses for touristic uses in Madrid

On February 5 2018, the Town Hall of Madrid agreed to suspend the granting of licenses for:

  1. All categories for tourist uses, including hotels, but only affecting residential buildings located in all the neighbourhoods of the Central District of Madrid.
  2. The category of tourist apartments in the Districts of Arganzuela, Salamanca, Chamberi and Moncloa-Aravaca.

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Trade & Customs

EU imposes additional customs duties on US products

As from 22 June 2018, additional customs duties will be applicable in the European Union (EU) on certain products originating in the United States (US). This is part of the commercial policy measures taken by the EU in response to the additional customs duties as imposed by the US safeguard measures on steel and aluminium originating from the EU.

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Trade Secrets

Implementation of the Trade Secrets Directive - the deadline has passed!

Saturday 9 June was the deadline for EU Member States to implement the Trade Secrets Directive, which seeks to both raise and harmonise the minimum standards of protection for trade secrets across the EU. In the UK, this was the day that the Trade Secrets (Enforcement, etc.) Regulations 2018 ("the Regulations") came into force, putting the protection of trade secrets on to the statute book in the UK for the first time. The key features of the UK Regulations, which were published on 21 May 2018, are summarised in this article.

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