Commercial Litigation UK

  • February 23, 2024

    VAT Refunds For Tax Errors Don't Require Interest, ECJ Rules

    European Union law does not require interest to be paid on value-added tax reimbursements if they are being made as a result of administrative errors or changes in tax calculations, the European Court of Justice determined.

  • February 23, 2024

    Therium Can't Block Law Firm's Claim Over VW Scandal

    A London court refused Friday to end a law firm's claim that litigation funder Therium breached a confidentiality agreement for group emissions litigation against Volkswagen, even though the case involves some facts similar to one decided by the U.K.'s top court.

  • February 23, 2024

    Ex-Kurdish Energy Minister Largely Fails To Ax Libel Defense

    An Iraqi politician largely failed to throw out an investigative reporting organization's defense to his defamation claim, after a London judge ruled that journalists had a real chance of showing they fairly and accurately reported legal proceedings in an article about alleged corruption in the Iraqi oil business.

  • February 23, 2024

    Ex-Ofsted Inspector Wins Claim Over Skin Graft Adjustments

    The Employment Tribunal has ruled that school inspection agency Ofsted failed to make proper adjustments for a school inspector with skin cancer when she returned to work after receiving a skin graft.

  • February 23, 2024

    Toyota Engine Patent Stalls At EPO For Lack Of Inventive Step

    Toyota has lost protections over its exhaust heat recovery system after an emissions specialist showed that the Japanese automotive giant's engine tech lacked an inventive step, the European Patent Office said Friday.

  • February 23, 2024

    Ex-Law Firm Worker Can't Nix Sanction Over Siphoned Funds

    An ex-employee of a law firm failed to convince a tribunal Friday that it should overturn a restriction on his ability to work in law after he was exonerated in criminal proceedings on accusations that he had embezzled at least £89,000 ($113,000).

  • February 23, 2024

    HIV Status Can't Shield Worker After 4-Month Absence

    A Scottish government worker has failed to prove that he was fired because of his disabilities, after a tribunal ruled that he left his bosses with few options after he was absent for 148 days during a probationary period.

  • February 23, 2024

    'Dry January' Campaign Launcher Can't Trademark Name

    A British nonprofit organization has failed to register a trademark for "Dry January," after the country's intellectual property officials ruled that it simply described non-alcoholic drinks and had become too widely used to become exclusive.

  • February 23, 2024

    EasyGroup Hits Dead End In 'EasyTaxi' TM Battle

    EasyGroup Ltd. has lost its fight to keep a trademark for "easyTaxi" after a European Union intellectual property authority concluded that the brand is merely descriptive and "devoid of distinctive character."

  • February 23, 2024

    Philips Patent Gets Brushed Off On Appeal

    Philips has failed to patent a method for tracking the movement of a toothbrush inside the mouth after European officials ruled that the amendments proposed by the Dutch electronics giant extended beyond its original application against the rules.

  • February 23, 2024

    Russian Tycoon Can Take Sanctions Case To UK's Top Court

    An oligarch can take his attempt to halt a $850 million fraud claim brought by two Kremlin-backed banks to the U.K.'s highest court after it granted him permission to challenge a decision allowing the case to proceed despite one of the lenders being under British sanctions.

  • February 23, 2024

    New Rules Aim To Widen Nonparties' Access To Court Docs

    Proposed changes to civil court rules would significantly broaden nonparties' access to documents including witness statements, expert reports and written arguments, further strengthening the principle of open justice that applies in English courts.

  • February 23, 2024

    Lawyers Question UK's Sanction Muscle 2 Years After Invasion

    A lack of enforcement over suspected sanctions breaches two years on from Russia's invasion of Ukraine has left lingering doubts about the effectiveness of the U.K.'s response — even though prosecutors recently opened the first such criminal case, legal experts say.

  • February 23, 2024

    UK Litigation Roundup: Here's What You Missed In London

    This past week in London has seen Tesco target competing retailer Lidl with a copyright claim as they battle in the Court of Appeal over the design of Tesco’s Clubcard, the directors of a taxi business sue the creator of an AI route mapping app for professional negligence, Global Aerospace Underwriting Managers tackle an aviation claim by an Irish investment company, and Robert Bull hit with a general commercial contracts claim by Hancock Finance.

  • February 23, 2024

    UK Gov't Backs Plans To Expand Scope Of Anti-SLAPP Laws

    The U.K. government added its backing on Friday to legislation that will prevent corrupt elites from making spurious legal claims to gag journalists and silence critics, expanding on similar rules introduced into law last year.

  • February 23, 2024

    Ex-Telecoms Execs Deny Knowledge Of Bribery In £11M Sale

    Three former directors of a telecommunications company allege that a cloud-technology business owes them more than £1.5 million ($1.9 million) left unpaid after it bought their business, while denying claims that they failed to disclose ongoing legal disputes that subsequently devalued the shares.

  • February 23, 2024

    Ex-Bevan Brittan Solicitor Stuck Off Over Antisemitic Tweets

    A former lawyer with Bevan Brittan LLP who sent abusive and antisemitic tweets about prominent U.K. figures, including a well-known barrister, was struck off by a tribunal on Friday.

  • February 23, 2024

    Fox Williams Beats £30M Game Show IP Negligence Claim

    Fox Williams won its bid Friday to strike out a media company's case that the law firm bungled its game show copyright claim and caused it to lose out on £30 million ($38 million), as a court ruled that the claim was "hopeless."

  • February 23, 2024

    Transgender Judge Hopes To Return 'When Hate Subsides'

    Britain's only transgender judge said on Friday that she hopes to return to public office "when hate subsides" after she resigned over concerns that she risked politicizing the judiciary if she remained on the bench. 

  • February 22, 2024

    Spain Allowed To Reclaim Illegal Aid Given To Ship Buyers

    Spain can reclaim the financial benefits given to beneficiaries of a tax scheme that gave illegal state aid to purchasers of ships built in Spanish shipyards, the European Union's General Court has ruled.

  • February 22, 2024

    NatWest Settles £60M VAT Fraud Case Ahead Of Retrial

    NatWest Markets PLC and liquidators for several defunct trading companies have settled a £60 million ($75.9 million) dispute over whether the bank is liable for a huge value-added tax fraud scheme ahead of a retrial.

  • February 22, 2024

    Transneft Ordered To Halt Bid To Block $14B Conspiracy Claim

    The world's largest oil pipeline company has been ordered by a London court to pause its legal action trying to force an imprisoned Russian oligarch to drop his $13.8 billion claim alleging his business empire was unlawfully seized in a sprawling Russian state conspiracy.

  • February 22, 2024

    Fired Fund Exec Gets Deposit Order Axed In Harassment Feud

    A tribunal was too quick to impose a deposit order and decide that a compliance chief is unlikely to succeed in his £2 million ($2.53 million) claim that an investment fund unfairly axed him after a member of its legal and compliance departments accused him of sexual harassment, an appeals judge has ruled.

  • February 22, 2024

    HD Hyundai Loses TM Appeal Over Abstract Rival Sign

    An American company can register an "abstract" trademark after European intellectual property officials ruled that it was not similar to HD Hyundai's earlier marks, as consumers would only see vertical bars rather than a word.

  • February 22, 2024

    Hospital Forced Chef To Quit By Not Sharing COVID Measures

    A tribunal has ruled that a U.K. mental healthcare business forced a hospital chef to quit by repeatedly ignoring his requests for a COVID-19 risk assessment when it asked him to return to work during the outbreak.

Expert Analysis

  • Ruling In FCA Case Offers Tips On Flexible Work Requests

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    In Wilson v. Financial Conduct Authority, the Employment Tribunal recently found that the regulator's rejection of a remote work request was justified, highlighting for employers factors that affect flexible work request outcomes, while emphasizing that individual inquiries should be considered on the specific facts, say Frances Rollin, Ella Tunnell and Kerry Garcia at Stevens & Bolton.

  • Pension Scheme Ruling Elucidates Conversion Issues

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    In Newell Trustees v. Newell Rubbermaid UK Services, the High Court recently upheld a pension plan's conversion of final salary benefits to money purchase benefits, a welcome conclusion that considered several notable issues, such as how to construe pension deeds and when contracts made outside scheme rules can determine benefits, say Ian Gordon and Jamie Barnett at Gowling.

  • New Fraud Prevention Offense May Not Make Much Difference

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    By targeting only large organizations, the Economic Crime Act's new failure to prevent fraud offense is striking in that, despite its breadth, it will affect so few companies, and is therefore unlikely to help ordinary victims, says Andrew Smith at Corker Binning.

  • Aldi Design Infringement Case Highlights Assessment Issues

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    The forthcoming English Court of Appeal decision in Marks and Spencer v. Aldi, regarding the alleged infringement of design rights, could provide practitioners with new guidance, particularly in relation to the relevant date for assessment of infringement and the weight that should be attributed to certain design elements in making this assessment, say Rory Graham and Georgia Davis at RPC.

  • Generative AI Raises IP, Data Protection And Contracts Issues

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    As the EU's recent agreement on the Artificial Intelligence Act has fueled businesses' interest in adopting generative AI tools, it is crucial to understand how these tools utilize material to generate output and what questions to ask in relation to intellectual property, data privacy and contracts, say lawyers at Deloitte Legal.

  • Decoding UK Case Law On Anti-Suit Injunctions

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    The English High Court's forthcoming decision on an anti-suit injunction filed in Augusta Energy v. Top Oil last month will provide useful guidance on application grounds for practitioners, but, pending that ruling, other recent decisions offer key considerations when making or resisting claims when there is an exclusive jurisdiction clause in the contract, says Abigail Healey at Quillon Law.

  • Litigation Funding Implications Amid Post-PACCAR Disputes

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    An English tribunal's recent decision in Neill v. Sony, allowing an appeal on the enforceability of a litigation funding agreement, highlights how the legislative developments on funding limits following the U.K. Supreme Court's 2023 decision in Paccar v. Competition Appeal Tribunal may affect practitioners, say Andrew Leitch and Anoma Rekhi at BCLP.

  • EU Product Liability Reforms Represent A Major Shakeup

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    The recent EU Parliament and Council provisional agreement on a new product liability regime in Europe revises the existing strict liability rules for the first time in 40 years by easing the burden of proof to demonstrate that a product is defective, a hurdle that many had previously failed to overcome, say Anushi Amin and Edward Turtle at Cooley.

  • Zimbabwe Ruling Bolsters UK's Draw As Arbitration Enforcer

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    An English court's recent decision in Border Timbers v. Zimbabwe, finding that state immunity was irrelevant to registering an arbitration award, emphasizes the U.K.'s reputation as a creditor-friendly destination for award enforcement, say Jon Felce and Tulsi Bhatia at Cooke Young.

  • Building Safety Ruling Offers Clarity On Remediation Orders

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    The First-tier Tribunal's recent decision in Triathlon Homes v. Stratford Village Development, holding that it was just and equitable to award a remediation contribution order, will undoubtedly encourage parties to consider this recovery route for building defects more seriously, say lawyers at Simmons and Simmons.

  • How AI Inventorship Is Evolving In The UK, EU And US

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    While the U.K. Supreme Court's recent decision in Thaler v. Comptroller-General is the latest in a series of decisions by U.K., U.S. and EU authorities that artificial intelligence systems cannot be named as inventors in patents, the guidance from these jurisdictions suggests that patents may be granted to human inventors that use AI as a sophisticated tool, say lawyers at Mayer Brown.

  • EU Report Is A Valuable Guide For Data Controllers

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    The European Data Protection Board recently published a study of cases handled by national supervisory authorities where uniform application of the General Data Protection Regulation was prioritized, providing data controllers with arguments for an adequate response to manage liability in case of a breach and useful insights into how security requirements are assessed, say Thibaut D'hulst and Malik Aouadi at Van Bael.

  • UK Court Ruling Reinforces CMA's Info-Gathering Powers

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    An English appeals court's recent decision in the BMW and Volkswagen antitrust cases affirmed that the U.K. Competition and Markets Authority can request information from entities outside the U.K., reinstating an important implement in the CMA's investigative toolkit, say lawyers at White & Case.

  • UK Ruling Revitalizes Discussions On Harmonizing AI And IP

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    The U.K. Supreme Court's decision in Thaler v. Comptroller-General last month has reinvigorated ongoing discussions about how the developments in artificial intelligence fit within the existing intellectual property legislative landscape, illustrating that effective regulation will be critical as the value and influence of this sector grows, say Nick White and Olivia Gray at Charles Russell.

  • Employers Can 'Waive' Goodbye To Unknown Future Claims

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    The Scottish Court of Session's recent decision in Bathgate v. Technip Singapore, holding that unknown future claims in a qualifying settlement agreement can be waived, offers employers the possibility of achieving a clean break when terminating employees and provides practitioners with much-needed guidance on how future cases might be dealt with in court, says Natasha Nichols at Farrer & Co.

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