Legal and Regulatory News

Updates on the latest legal and regulatory developments

Gambling

Sweden referred to Court of Justice over online gambling legislation

On 16 October 2014 the European Commission announced its decision to refer Sweden to the Court of Justice of the European Union as a result of the non-compliance of Swedish online gambling legislation with EU law. The referral follows an unsatisfactory reaction by Sweden to the Commission's November 2013 compliance request.

21 October 2014

IP Litigation

Specsavers rescues its wordless logo mark as court battles concludes

Specsavers rescues its wordless logo mark as court battle concludes

The Court of Appeal has handed down its decision in the final instalment of the long-running court battle between Specsavers and Asda (Specsavers & ors v Asda Stores[2014] EWCA Civ 1294). To re-cap, this case arose from a 2009 marketing campaign by Asda for its in-store opticians' services, which featured the straplines 'Be a real spec saver at Asda' and 'Spec savings at Asda', alongside a logo comprising two ovals similar to the well-known overlapping ellipses logo used by Specsavers for many years.

 

 

 

 

20 October 2014

Gambling

Industry takes stock after Singapore’s Remote Gambling Act is passed

Singapore's Remote Gambling Act is here - and far beyond the borders of the South-East Asian city-state, the gambling industry is weighing up the implications of one of the most far-reaching and restrictive remote gambling laws seen in any jurisdiction to date.

16 October 2014

Employment

Employment update - Autumn 2014

Did you miss some of our recent employment law updates and Digital Employment blog posts from the last few months?  Catch up with them here.

13 October 2014

Life Sciences

Olswang EU Competition Law Bulletin - Life Sciences Focus

In this bulletin we provide an update on recent EU competition law activity in the life sciences sector. This includes an outline of recent European Commission merger control activity, an overview of the appeal by Servier and others of the Commission's decision to impose fines of €427.7m for anticompetitive practices and news of an investigation by the Spanish competition authority into alleged price fixing of blood sugar strips. We also report on the UK Competition and Market Authority's new Private Healthcare Market Investigation Order 2014.

07 October 2014

Corporate

Olswang Corporate Quarterly - Autumn 2014

In this edition we feature a series of articles on one of the biggest proposed changes in company law for some years.  The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill currently making its way through Parliament will require the individuals who control UK companies to be publicly disclosed for the first time.  There are also draft provisions for the abolition of bearer shares, changes affecting company directors and new corporate administration procedures.

We also consider whether there is a duty to speak up when the other party to a contract is acting under a mistaken assumption - a question considered in the recent Starbev v Interbrew case.  Our regular Did You Know? feature highlights the new approach taken on the validity of agreements to negotiate in Emirates Trading Agency v Prime Mineral Exports.  It also looks at new guidance published on equality law and director appointments and includes a reminder of recent changes relating to employee share incentive arrangements.

03 October 2014

Corporate

Transparency of UK company ownership: far reaching changes on the way

The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill is currently making its way through Parliament.  Of particular importance to UK companies and their shareholders are the provisions dealing with the transparency of company ownership.   The proposed changes are far reaching and the Government has indicated its intention to pass the Bill into law in 2015.  We summarise the key parts of the draft legislation, its implications and who needs to start preparing for its implementation.

03 October 2014

Corporate

Transparency of UK company ownership: proposed abolition of bearer shares

Bearer shares will be outlawed if the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill is enacted in its current form.  Action will need to be taken by both companies with outstanding bearer shares and the holders of those shares, who should monitor the progress of the legislation and factor the changes into their arrangements.

03 October 2014

Corporate

Transparency of UK company ownership: provisions relating to directors

The Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill contains a number of provisions relating to directors.  Some of the changes, for example the ban on corporate directors, are part of the Government's drive for transparency in corporate management and control.  Others, for example the ability of the court to disqualify a director following misconduct abroad, are designed to increase trust in UK companies by improving the accountability of directors for misconduct.

03 October 2014

Corporate

Did you know...? Some practical points for companies - October 2014

Our regular Did You Know? feature highlights the new approach taken on the validity of agreements to negotiate in Emirates Trading Agency v Prime Mineral Exports.  We also look at new guidance published on equality law and director appointments and include a reminder of recent changes relating to employee share incentive arrangements.

03 October 2014

Intellectual Property

INNs - Internet name nonchalance?

"The health sector is a major target of those engaged in abusive online cases, e.g. online pharmacies selling counterfeit drugs, and 10% of complaints are filed by the pharma industry," said the World Health Organisation (WHO) in its 2009 report of the 49th Consultation on International Non-proprietary Names for Pharmaceutical substances (INN Consultation). In this report, the WHO highlighted the vulnerability of the INN system to online abuses, due in part to its uneasy interplay with trade mark rights. Amid significant changes to the Internet system, we consider the relevance of this issue today, what action has been suggested, and the additional challenges on the horizon.

30 September 2014

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