Today, as part of its budget announcement the government indicated its plans to amend the Patent Act, Trade-marks Act and Industrial Design Act to provide statutory privilege for confidential communications with agents and permit CIPO to extend deadlines in cases of force majeure. The government also plans to amend the Copyright Act to implement and accede to the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who are Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled and to extend the term of protection of sound recordings and performances for an additional 20 years.

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Supreme Court

Yesterday, the Supreme Court of Canada issued an oral judgment at the hearing of Sanofi’s appeal in the ramipril Section 8 proceeding, dismissing the appeal with costs.

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Section 8 at the SCC

On Monday, April 20th, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Sanofi-Aventis’ appeal in Apotex’s Ramipril proceeding pursuant to Section 8 of the Patented Medicine (Notice of Compliance Regulations). The appeal is from the March 2014 split decision of the Federal Court of Appeal in 2014 FCA 68 relating to among other things the ‘hypothetical world’, the ramp-up period and non-indicated uses.

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Patents at the US Supreme Court

Today, the United States Supreme Court heard oral arguments (link) on two patent cases:

  • Commil USA v. Cisco Systems (13-896) relating to whether a defendant’s belief that a patent is invalid is a defence to induced infringement; and
  • Kimble v. Marvel Enterprises  (13-720) relating to whether the 1964 decision in Brulotte which held that “a patentee’s use of a royalty agreement that projects beyond the expiration date of the patent is unlawful per se“, should be overruled.


Here are some updates on previously posted items:

Technology Neutrality

On Monday, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in CBC v. SODRAC, an appeal from the Federal Court of Appeal’s decision on what copyright royalties are payable on ephemeral copies under the principles of technology neutrality.

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Sylvain Laporte, Commissioner of Patents and Registrar of Trade-marks has been appointed President of the Canadian Space Agency, effective March 9, 2015.



Judicial Appointments

Honourable Justice Rennie has been elevated to the Federal Court of Appeal. Also today, Honourable Denis Gascon has been appointed to the Federal Court. Gascon was formerly with Norton Rose Fulbright Canada in Montreal practising in the area of competition law and international trade regulations.

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Amendments to Plant Breeders’ Rights Act

Changes to the Plant Breeders’  Rights Act received royal assent today. The legislation, Bill C-18, An Act to amend certain Acts relating to agriculture and agri-food, includes changes addressing the duration, scope and exceptions to the rights under the Act.

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Federal Court Modernization

The Federal Courts Rules have been amended to remove obstacles to greater use of technology by the court. Among other things, the changes permit the registry to maintain an official electronic record, clarifying electronic service, amend the definition of ‘document’ and permit electronic filing. Also, the Federal Court has published a Notice to the Profession regarding obtaining copies from the digital audio recording system used at hearings.

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