Answer ... Yes, an injunction is available in patent infringement cases in Poland, both before trial and during the court proceedings.
Answer ... An injunction may be requested by any party to the proceedings, if it can substantiate its claim and a legal interest in grant of the injunction. A legal interest exists if failure to grant the injunction would prevent or significantly hinder the enforcement of a ruling issued in a given case, or would otherwise prevent or seriously hinder satisfaction of the purpose of proceedings in a given case. When deciding on the injunction, the court will take into consideration the interests of the parties insofar as this is necessary to ensure adequate legal protection for the patent holder (or an exclusive licensee, where the exclusive licence has been registered by the Polish Patent Office in the Patent Register and the exclusive licence agreement does not preclude this), without excessively burdening the alleged infringer.
For the court to grant an injunction, an infringement must either have been committed or be threatened at that point.
When granting an injunction prior to infringement proceedings, the court will specify a timeframe within which an initial pleading must be filed, failing which the injunction shall be cancelled. This timeframe must not exceed two weeks.
An injunction request should specify the action required to safeguard the patent holder’s rights (eg, cessation of sale of the allegedly infringing goods) and substantiate the facts justifying the request.
The court may condition the enforcement of an injunction on the provision by the patent holder of security, in case the alleged infringer suffers any loss as a result of the injunction and no infringement is subsequently found.
Answer ... Yes – according to Polish law, damages may be awarded where culpable infringement is established.
Answer ... In case of culpable infringement, the patent holder or another party permitted by law may request the infringer to remedy the damage inflicted either:
- on general terms (ie, the patent holder must prove the loss caused by the infringement); or
- based on the corresponding licence fee or other remuneration which would be have been payable to obtain authorisation to exploit the invention.
The damages should compensate the patent holder for the loss that it has suffered as a result of the infringement.
As an alternative to damages, the patent holder or other party may request recovery of the unlawful profits made by the infringer as a result of the infringement. In such case, the assessment will refer to the estimation of the infringer’s profits, not the patent holder’s losses.
Answer ... Patent infringement claims may be monetary (ie, damages or delivery up of unlawfully earned profits) or non-monetary (cessation of infringement). This will affect the type of injunction that may be granted to the patent holder.
In case of monetary claims, the injunction may provide for:
- seizure of moveable property;
- remuneration for work; or
receivables from a bank account or other receivables or other property rights.
In case of non-monetary claims, the injunction may provide for such actions as the court may deem appropriate in the circumstances, including those specified above. In particular, the court may:
- normalise the rights and obligations of the parties for the duration of the proceedings; and/or
- prohibit the sale of the allegedly infringing goods for the duration of the proceedings.
Answer ... Under Polish law, damages are intended to compensate the patent holder for the loss that it has suffered as a result of the infringement. Punitive damages are not available.
Answer ... If a party to infringement proceedings does not comply with a court order during the proceedings, then sanctions may be ordered by the court.
Answer ... Under Polish law, on the patent holder’s request, if an injunction is breached, the court may order the alleged infringer to pay a sum of money to the patent holder. This is a popular way to ensure compliance with an injunction.
There are no limits on the amount that may be ordered in this regard. In determining the amount of money, the court will consider the arguments presented by the parties and the interests of the parties, so as to ensure that the obligation is enforceable and does not overburden the alleged infringer.
In case of breach of an injunction, the court may also impose a fine or, in case of non-payment, imprisonment.
Answer ... Under Polish law, the losing party is obliged to pay the winning party’s costs on request, within the limits of the fee rates specified by law (fixed scale of costs). If the claims are only partially upheld, the costs will be mutually cancelled out or shared accordingly.
Answer ... As mentioned in question 9.9, there is a fixed scale of costs. Usually, the court will award basic attorneys’ fees as laid down in the law. However, the courts have some discretion in awarding costs: depending on the complexity of the case and the contribution of the attorneys in clarifying and resolving it, the court may multiply the basic fee by up to six. The multiplied attorneys’ fee cannot exceed value of the matter.