In a lengthy obiter dicta, the Barcelona Court of Appeal seems to depart from a longstanding assumption of Spanish law: that the mere continuance of the infringement (i.e. the presence of the infringing goods on the market) is per se enough to justify the urgent interest in the grant of a preliminary injunction. Rather, an…

During the past decade, Spanish courts have debated the impact of the TRIPS Agreement (“TRIPS”) on patents the applications of which were filed before 7 October 1992, that is, before Spain’s Reservation under Article 167 of the European Patent Convention (“EPC”) expired. According to this Reservation, European patents would not have any effects in Spain,…

In a Judgment dated 12 June 2013, the Spanish Supreme Court confirmed that it was possible to discriminate between different objective technical problems within the same set of claims. Accordingly, an independent claim may be found to be obvious, and yet one of its dependent claims could still be deemed valid, provided that it claimed…

On 24 November 2016, the Court of Appeal of Barcelona (Section 15) handed down a judgment in which it confirmed that “the interpretation of the scope of protection of a patent for the purposes of analysing its validity cannot be different from when its infringement is analysed”. The Judges also highlighted the relevance of the…

For the first time, the Spanish Supreme Court made far-reaching observations on key issues of the assessment of inventive step and, in particular, on a) the reformulation of the “objective technical problem” as defined in the patent’s specification, b) the limits to the combination of prior art documents and c) the professional qualifications required for…

For many years, Spanish Courts have considered the “problem & solution approach” developed by the European Patent Office (“EPO”) to be a very useful tool for the purpose of trying to make an objective assessment of inventive activity. Unlike in other jurisdictions such as Germany, in Spain this method has become the natural instrument used…

A judgment of 13 July 2017 from the Spanish Supreme Court (Civil Chamber) has highlighted the importance of taking the fine pencil when examining novelty. The decision stemmed from a judgment of 12 September 2014 from the Barcelona Court of Appeal (Section 15), which had declared patent ES 2.344.241 invalid due to lack of novelty….