Legal and Regulatory News

Updates on the latest legal and regulatory developments

Competition & Regulatory

EU Commission’s formal charges against Google Shopping – background and consequences

After months of speculation, on 15 April 2015, the European Commission sent Google a "Statement of Objections" formally setting out the competition case relating to the online-shopping market. Below we provide an overview of the Commission's investigation of Google, which dates back to 2010, before considering what this latest development means for Google as well as for the enforcement of abuse of dominance cases more generally.

27 April 2015

Internet

European Commission E-commerce Sector Inquiry

E-commerce businesses across Europe are bracing themselves for the launch of the European Commission's sector inquiry next month. This fact-finding exercise will focus on identifying and addressing obstacles to cross-border competition in online markets and will form an integral building block of the Commission's Digital Single Market strategy.

24 April 2015

Competition & Regulatory

Consumer Rights Act 2015: Out-of-court compensation programmes for infringements of competition law to be approved by the CMA

The Consumer Rights Act 2015 is set to reform the enforcement of competition law through the courts in the UK.  The wide ranging reforms will make it easier for companies which have suffered harm as a result of an infringement of competition law both to bring a damages claim and, ultimately, to obtain compensation.  In particular the reforms promote the UK's specialist competition tribunal, the Competition Appeal Tribunal, as the main forum to bring such claims.

22 April 2015

Competition & Regulatory

Consumer Rights Act 2015: Promoting collective proceedings in competition damages claims

The Consumer Rights Act 2015 is set to reform the enforcement of competition law through the courts in the UK.  The wide ranging reforms will make it easier for companies which have suffered harm as a result of an infringement of competition law both to bring a damages claim and, ultimately, to obtain compensation.  In particular the reforms promote the UK's specialist competition tribunal, the Competition Appeal Tribunal, as the main forum to bring such claims.

22 April 2015

Competition & Regulatory

Consumer Rights Act 2015: Reforms to damages litigation in the UK for infringements of competition law

The UK's system for the enforcement of competition law through the courts rather than by a complaint to a regulator is set to be overhauled when the Consumer Rights Act 2015 enters into force.  The reforms contained in the CRA are envisaged to make it easier for claimants to bring damages claims in the UK against parties which have been found to have infringed competition law, either at UK or EU level.  Competition law claims can include damages claims against cartel members or challenges to a company with a dominant market position.

22 April 2015

Employment

Balancing caring and working – employment rights of carers

According to Carers Trust, there are almost seven million people in the UK - around one in ten - providing unpaid care for a family member or friend who cannot cope without their support.

Around three million of these carers are also in employment. Carers may be providing support for an elderly relative, a terminally ill partner or a disabled child and face the difficult task of balancing their working and caring responsibilities.

In addition to financial support which carers may be able to claim, employment law can also provide employees with caring responsibilities increased support and protection in the workplace. 

09 April 2015

UPC Renewal Fees

Background

A key point of contention in the development of the Unitary Patent has been the level of renewal fees to be paid for each Unitary Patent.  

Under the current system a renewal fee is paid in each country in which protection is required.  Renewal costs therefore increase with the number of countries covered.  Patentees routinely select which countries in which to maintain patents to focus budgets on countries with the most commercial value.  However, the Unitary Patent is a single patent across all participating member states which cannot be subdivided and for which a single renewal fee is paid each year.  The amount of that renewal fee is thus key to the economics of using the Unified Patent System.

09 April 2015

Data Protection

The Olswang Cyber Alert April 2015

Welcome to the latest edition of Olswang's Cyber Alert, a regular round up of regulation, best practice and news from our international cyber breach and crisis management team.

01 April 2015

sport

Free-to-air TV in the UK: more events may be protected

A change in government following the UK general election scheduled for this May could result in an increase in the number of UK sporting events whose rights are reserved for free-to-air television. Although such a move would prove immensely frustrating for any affected sporting bodies, there may be a reluctance to take legal action following recent unsuccessful challenges before the European courts. Moreover, for rival pay-tv broadcasters BT and Sky, a reduction in available sports rights means the removal of potentially significant opportunities to compete - opportunities they would vehemently defend. This article outlines the relevant legal framework, discusses the likely future changes and examines how a potential challenge may play out.

30 March 2015

Employment tribunal finds commission should be included in holiday pay

An employment tribunal has ruled in the case of Lock v British Gas Trading Limited that the Working Time Regulations 1998 ("WTR") can and should be read to require employers to include commission paid to workers when calculating the rate of pay for the basic statutory four weeks' holiday entitlement.

30 March 2015

Landmark judgment in Vidal-Hall et al v Google upheld

Landmark judgment in Vidal-Hall et al v Google upheld

The Court of Appeal has upheld Justice Tugendhat's landmark judgment in Vidal-Hall et al v Google, which memorably classified the misuse of private information as a tort. The Court has also held that claimants may recover damages under the Data Protection Act 1998 for non-material loss.

27 March 2015

The Secretary of State for the Home Department v Raytheon Systems Ltd: the court considers serious irregularity in arbitral proceedings

The Arbitration Act 1996 gives the court powers to correct serious failures to comply with the "due process" of arbitral proceedings.  Successful challenges are rare, but a recent case in the High Court,The Secretary of State for the Home Department v Raytheon Systems Ltd [2014] EWHC 4375 (TCC) and [2015] EWHC 311 (TCC), shows they are not impossible. 

26 March 2015

Anti-suit injunction can be used to prevent creditor pursing proceedings in another jurisdiction to gain an unjustifiable priority in liquidation

In Stichting Shell Pensioenfonds v Krys and another (British Virgin Islands) [2014] UKPC 41, the Privy Council considered the question of whether, when a company is being wound up in the jurisdiction where it is incorporated, an anti-suit injunction should be issued to prevent a creditor from pursuing proceedings in another jurisdiction which are calculated to give them an unjustifiable priority. 

26 March 2015

Life Sciences

Olswang EU competition law bulletin – Life science focus

In this bulletin we provide an update on recent EU competition law activity in the life science sector. In particular, we provide an overview of recent developments in ongoing competition law cases around Europe and some insights into the European Commission's decision in the pay-for-delay case against Lundbeck and several generic producers following publication of the non-confidential version of that decision.

19 March 2015

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