As of 1 July, 2023, new rules will take effect in the Civil Procedure Code on injunction procedures in IP cases.
Under these new rules, injunction proceedings will cease to be ex parte proceedings and will now implicitly be inter partes proceedings. When granting an injunction in an IP case, a court will also have to consider that the IP right for which the injunction is being sought might be invalidated. Meanwhile, rightholders will have to decide quickly and within a certain time whether to seek an injunction for their claims.
The main ways in which injunction procedures in in IP cases will change include:
- requirement for a court to examine the potential infringer before ruling on the question of an injunction, except in two situations:
- the first is when the court determines that the ruling on the injunction is needed immediately – the special circumstances justifying this will certainly have to be explained in the motion for the injunction,
- the second is when the type of injection sought can only be enforced by a court enforcement officer, for example in the form of seizure of goods,
- a rightholder will have to state in the motion for an injunction whether proceedings have been conducted or are pending to invalidate their exclusive right, and the court making the ruling on the injunction will have to consider the probability of the right being invalidated,
- a motion for an injunction filed more than six months from the moment IP right infringement becomes apparent will be automatically rejected.
These changes are definitely favorable for a potential defendant, and present an opportunity for formulating various strategies for defense against allegations of infringement of intellectual property rights. Moreover, they are intended to induce rightholders to take legal action quickly if they find that their exclusive rights are infringed. Thus this development could have a major impact on foreign businesses planning legal action in Poland to protect intellectual property. On the other hand, these new rules on injunction proceedings in IP cases could affect planning of strategy for preventing businesses’ operations being frozen in Poland due to an injunction.
Author: Beata Matusiewicz-Kulig