Proposed amendments to the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth)

On 29 March 2017, the Copyright Amendment (Disability Access and Other Measures) Bill 2017 (Bill) was introduced to the Senate.  The Bill proposes to amend the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) (Act) to allow for new situations where the use of copyright material will not result in an infringement of copyright, and to change the standard terms of copyright duration.  The Bill’s Explanatory Memorandum sets out that these amendments aim to: [Read more…]

Groundless threats of copyright infringement

It is often argued that intellectual property rights create an imbalance of power that is open to abuse by rights holders.  In an effort to counter this, section 202(1) of the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) (Act) provides remedies for groundless threats of legal proceedings for copyright infringement.  This article will discuss the elements that define a threat as “groundless” and the remedies available when such a threat is made. [Read more…]

Contracting with Minors – is it even possible?

In the innovation economy it is becoming more prevalent for individuals aged less than eighteen (18) years (Minors) to seek to build enterprises.  From time to time we are asked to consider whether a client can contract with a Minor.

The law in Australia[1] and Queensland[2] states that a Minor is someone who has yet to reach the age of majority, (being eighteen (18) years).  In Australia, at common law and in statute, the general rule is that a contract with a Minor is void except in limited circumstances.[3]

[Read more…]

What is a trade secret?

In simple terms, a trade secret is any secret commercial information that provides one business with an advantage over another.  For example, trade secrets have been used by Coco-Cola for decades to ensure that its formula remains secret.

Despite the lack of a settled, legal definition of a “trade secret”, their value is recognised at both law, and in equity.  At law, restraints of trade can be legitimately used in order to prevent the disclosure of trade secrets, or to prevent the use of trade secrets by employees in any subsequent business or employment.  Trade secrets are protected in equity by way of an action for breach of confidence even in the absence of contractual agreements restraining their use.

[Read more…]

Changes to Trade Mark Application Fees are Now Live

On 3 August 2016, IP Australia announced incoming changes to the fees payable for:

  • trade mark applications; and
  • trade mark registrations.[1]

As announced these changes apply to all trade mark applications filed after 10 October 2016.

[Read more…]

Groundless threats of trade mark infringement

Whilst it is important to diligently protect your brand, the recent decision in Stone & Wood Group Pty Ltd v Intellectual Property Development Corporation Pty Ltd [2016] FCA 820 (Pacific Ale Case) serves as a timely reminder that, much like the brewing of a delicious craft beer, making allegations of trade mark infringement requires extensive preparation, research and good judgment. [Read more…]

Enforcing the terms of a confidentiality agreement

Legally enforceable obligations to maintain confidence may arise in contract or in equity.  Relief is available against a party who discloses confidential information without authorisation, and in some cases against third party recipients of such information.  In order to enforce a breach of confidence in contract or in equity, the presence of a number of elements must be established. [Read more…]

What is a “Confidentiality Agreement”?

A confidentiality agreement (Confidentiality Agreement) is a commercial contract also referred to as a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) where one (1) or more parties provide confidential information to the other, with the expectation that both parties will keep the information provided secret and use it only for an agreed purpose (Permitted Purpose).  Confidentiality Agreements can contain mandatory or elective obligations to disclose, or one (1) way or mutual obligations of confidence, in addition to a range of other obligations relating to the disclosure and use of confidential information which the parties agree to comply with. [Read more…]

Is your confidential information really confidential?

The term confidential information is often bandied about in commercial transactions, however it is often inaccurately described.  Because of this, we are often asked to consider whether information that a party is considering disclosing as part of a commercial transaction is actually capable of being kept confidential. [Read more…]

Dundas Lawyers
Street Address Suite 12, Level 9, 320 Adelaide Street Brisbane QLD 4001

Tel: 07 3221 0013

Send this to friend