Jurisdictional issues Archives - international litigation blog
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Jurisdictional issues

Munich Court of Appeals Issues Anti-Anti-Suit Injunction in FRAND Case

As a supplement to the blogpost published a couple of weeks ago on the judgment of the Paris Court of First Instance (Tribunal de Grande Instance) of 8 November 2019 which issued an anti-anti-suit injunction against Lenovo ordering that company to withdraw a request for an anti-suit injunction pending before a US Court, Mr Peter Bert (a reader of this blog) shared with me an article that he wrote concerning a similar case recently put before German courts.

My colleagues Steve Ross and Rebecca Halbach discussed this German case in the latest edition of Van Bael & Bellis’ Competition Law Newsletter. I have decided to reproduce their article below.

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Article drafted by Steve Ross and Rebecca Halbach

On 12 December 2019, the Munich Court of Appeals (Oberlandesgericht München) (the Court) upheld the judgment of the Munich District Court (Landgericht München I) of 2 October 2019 which had granted a preliminary injunction in a case pitting Continental (Continental), an automobile supplier, against Nokia (Nokia), a telecommunications company. The Court ordered Continental to withdraw the action for anti-suit injunction which that company had brought against Nokia before the US District Court of the Northern District of California (the US Court) in a patent dispute.READ MORE

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French Court Issues Anti-Anti-Suit Injunction Claim in FRAND Dispute

Article drafted by Steve Ross, Associate at Van Bael & Bellis

On 8 November 2019, the Paris Court of First Instance (Tribunal de Grande Instance) (the French Court) issued a judgment (in case RG 19/59311) for a preliminary injunction in a case pitting IPCOM GmbH & Co. KG (IPCom), an intellectual property rights licensing and technology R&D company, against Lenovo/Motorola (Lenovo), a telecommunications company. The French Court held that it had jurisdiction over the case with regard to a patent infringement claim and ordered Lenovo to withdraw the motion for an anti-suit injunction which that company had brought before the US District Court of the Northern District of California (the US Court) in so far as it concerns the French part of the patent.READ MORE

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CJEU Rules on Jurisdiction in Private Damages Actions for Infringement of Competition Law in Absence of Contractual Link between Plaintiff and Participant to Cartel

On 29 July 2019, the Court of Justice of the European Union (the CJEU) handed down a judgment in which it held that a domestic court in an EU Member State has jurisdiction to rule on a follow-on competition damages claim even when no direct contractual link exists between the participant to a cartel and the victim.

The case concerned a civil action for damages initiated by Tibor-Trans Fuvarosó és Kereskedelmi Kft (Tibor-Trans), a freight transport company based in Hungary, against DAF Trucks NV (DAF), a trucks manufacturer headquartered in the Netherlands. The case was initiated before Hungarian courts by Tibor-Trans following the 2016 decision of the European Commission which found that, between 1997 and 2011, the international truck manufacturers, including DAF, had colluded on pricing and on the timing and the passing on of costs for the introduction of emission technologies (Case AT.39824 – Trucks).

Tibor-Trans brought its follow-on action for damages against DAF alleging that it had suffered financial harm as a result of the collusive arrangements between truck companies. Tibor-Trans said it had heavily invested in the purchase of new trucks between 2000 and 2008. In order to purchase those trucks, Tibor-Trans had secured financing from leasing companies which retained ownership of the vehicles until the expiry of the leasing agreements. The right of ownership only passed on to Tibor-Trans after performance of its obligations under the leasing agreements. Thus, although Tibor-Trans never purchased any DAF trucks, it claimed to be a direct victim of the anti-competitive infringement, considering that (i) the leasing companies only provided financing and completely passed on the overcharge to Tibor-Trans; and (ii) in Hungary, customers were only able to purchase trucks from independent dealers, and not directly from the original equipment manufacturers.

Tibor-Trans argued that Hungarian courts had jurisdiction to rule in that case. Tibor-Trans relied more particularly on Article 7(2) of Regulation 1215/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 12 December 2012 on the jurisdiction and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters (the Brussels Ibis Regulation) which provides that “[a] person domiciled in a Member State may be sued in another Member State: […] in matters relating to tort, delict or quasi-delict, in the courts for the place where the harmful event occurred or may occur“.READ MORE

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U.S. Supreme Court Rules on Threshold Issues of Arbitrability

Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court (the Supreme Court or the Court) handed down two interesting decisions on the question of who, between a judge and an arbitrator, was properly positioned to answer the threshold question of whether a specific dispute is subject to arbitration and whether the parties are entitled to delegate that issue to arbitrators.READ MORE

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Brussels Court of Appeal Rules FIFA and UEFA Arbitration Clauses Inapplicable

On 29 August 2018, in a case involving FIFA (the International Football Association) and UEFA (the European Football Association), the Brussels Court of Appeal (the Court of Appeal), issued an important decision refusing to refer the dispute to arbitration despite the existence of arbitration clauses providing for the jurisdiction of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).READ MORE

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After Token Rush: International Litigation and Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) – Part 2

This article considers some of the international litigation questions that arise out of Initial Coin Offering (ICO).

In the first part of this article, we discussed in particular issues relating to jurisdiction. We now continue this discussion while also considering questions relating to applicable laws.

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Issues of jurisdiction are made somewhat more complex by the circumstance that many ICO’s general terms and conditions (TnC) contain clauses that may directly or indirectly affect the jurisdiction of courts. In this respect, the most obviously relevant type of agreement are forum selection clauses; in the case of the Tezos ICO, for instance, the TnC specified that “(a)ny dispute arising out of or in connection with the creation of the [tokens] and the development and execution of the Tezos Network shall be exclusively and finally settled by the ordinary courts of Zug, Switzerland“. As noted by the District Judge denying the motion to dismiss, this is best understood not as a “clickwrap agreement“, but as a “browsestrap” one: when subscribing, investors were not asked to check a box indicating consent to the TnC, but simply enabled to retrieve the TnC on the website advertising the ICO. In order to determine whether the forum selection clause is binding, hence, a case-by-case assessment is necessary, evaluating whether – given the circumstances of the case, such as the structure of the website – it is reasonable to expect that users in general accessed the TnC, and whether the claimant(s) in particular had any demonstrable knowledge of the contents of the TnC.READ MORE

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