Specialization, excellence and prestige
Intellectual property is an area in which LGV can rightfully claim a reputation of excellence and indisputable specialization. It is the core business of LGV and of its founding partners, and a branch of law that has been practiced since the early nineties.
LGV is one of the very few law firms in Italy that can offer assistance of the highest level in all areas of industrial and intellectual property, including copyright (especially as applied to new technologies), trademarks, patents, designs, know-how, and more. In this field, LGV professionals have experimented with and currently favour the comparison, multidisciplinary nature and use of several legal instruments. These instruments have been successfully used in areas of the law different from those in which they would normally be deployed. For instance, LGV has made use of ante causam protective instruments – which are normally used in copyright (especially software) cases – when dealing with matters involving data and know-how.
The basic premise for LGV is that in the modern world intangible assets represent the area of greatest economic growth. It is also a sector wherein a client is most likely to gain a competitive edge, including at an international level. In this regard, LGV is specialized in offering its clients wide ranging assistance in the development, production, distribution and defence of intangible assets. LGV works with national and international clients, assisting them in the course of each phase of the existence of their assets, from their creation and development to their economic enhancement and legal defence before all competent bodies. As a result of its interdisciplinary competences, LGV has developed innovative strategies for the protection of client assets and over time has garnered a significant case history and series of judicial precedents.
LGV offers consultancy with respect to all aspects involving the creation of the assets (such as collaboration, employment, and partnership agreements; financing, subsidies; acquisition of technologies and other resources; systems for the protection of confidential information; etc.); requests and obtainment of rights of protection (strategic evaluation of the best way to protect the asset; filing of applications; assistance in application procedures as well as possible oppositions); matters connected to the negotiation and economic enhancement of the assets (licensing in and out; partnership and various types of collaboration contracts; distribution; M&A; etc.); and, finally, legal defences.
Lastly, LGV is specialized in IP litigation, where it can claim an unrivalled expertise. Litigation for LGV is not simply the resolution of disputes. When correctly used, it may also be an important short or medium term commercial strategy for business clients as well as an element in a wider marketing campaign.
LGV is specialized in preventive strategy directed at the identification of the most appropriate course of action among those available both contentiously and non-contentiously; if litigation is elected, LGV is then able to provide guidance with respect to the option of commencing civil, administrative and/or criminal proceedings or a combination thereof. LGV has a preference for both judicial and extra-judicial instruments that are most likely to quickly resolve a dispute. For this reason, if possible and recommendable to do so, the firm suggests using urgent remedies. Also LGV has developed systems of communication with opposing parties that immediately ensure a high level of attention on their part and have resulted in an excellent rate of pre-litigation settlements. These systems have proven particularly effective in cases of industrial disputes involving infringements of rights over intangible assets. Moreover, LGV has developed a significant experience in the follow-up of all contentious and non-contentious matters. Follow-up consists of a series of precise steps that are defined by the application of a stringent schedule and governed by the principle that the final result must be continuously and tenaciously pursued. Over the course of time, this has proven to be effective in terms of positive resolution of a dispute or potential dispute. However, LGV is not as concerned with obtaining a decision in its favour, as with the concrete realization of the objectives of its clients, which often requires a great deal of work additional to that pertaining solely to matters of a juridical and/or judicial nature. Finally, LGV is in a position to successfully manage multi-jurisdictional disputes and, generally, any dispute involving international elements (for example, LGV has managed parallel patent, trademark and copyright cases simultaneously in several jurisdictions as well as the acquisition of international corporate groups with assets registered in different territories).
In IP, LGV means:
– Assistance in the research and development of intangible assets
– Consultancy as to the request and obtainment of rights of protection, or the creation of alternative forms of protection (when other rights are not available, as is the case with know-how)
– Trademark and design registration as well as patenting of products or processes, also with the support of highly specialized Italian and international patent experts
– Partnership and/or collaboration agreements
– Assistance in financing
– Planning of the instruments used for the management of corporate assets (contracts for the transfer or licensing of technology; software development; production, distribution, sponsorship, franchising, merchandising, and licensing, in the most diverse sectors of intellectual property, as well as negotiations with collecting societies; etc.)
– Institutional representation of rights owners in both the legislative and regulatory sectors (lobbying)
– Assistance in the creation of marketing, promotional, and PR campaigns
– Due diligence with respect to strategic corporate assets of various types, such as patent portfolios, trademarks, and know-how
– Assistance in customs checks
– Consultancy in relation to regulatory matters (e.g., authorizations in the food sector, telecommunications, high tech)
– Privacy and data protection
– Public procurement
– Defence in litigation
LGV deals with patents and portfolios of patents in every sector of technology, from the traditional areas of mechanics (textile machinery, machine equipment, automotive, fluid dynamics, installations, and workstations) to modern technologies (microchips, optical supports, and electronics in general). The firm also has experience with respect to pharmaceutical products, medicinals, diagnostics, biotechnology, biomaterials, water filters, telecommunication systems, sim cards, consumer electronics, and more.
In this sector LGV is known for its highly specialised and well-established experience in assisting clients for the protection, enhancement, valorisation and management of inventions. LGV is also particularly well known for its experience in litigation, which in the field of IP is known for its stringent schedules and intensity, and requires the legal professionals involved to operate under extreme time pressure, and to make use of their technical and legal competences, particularly by means of the available urgent remedies.
Another peculiarity of patent litigation, considering the present commonly adopted practice of protecting the same invention in several countries and regions (European patent, international extension, etc.), is that it often involves more than one jurisdiction. LGV has thus gained relevant experience in this field and is now in a fully confident position to develop and coordinate litigation strategies within a transnational framework.
Consultancy in relation to patents is also comprehensive of the organization and planning of licensing programmes and the redaction of licensing agreements or assignments. Additionally, the economic enhancement of patent rights is also obtained by taking into account applicable instances of tax relief.
The firm has dealt with highly prestigious marks, both contentiously and non-contentiously. LGV operates in the sector of distinctive atypical signs, commercial names, denominations, editorial headlines and internet domain names, before all competent authorities.
LGV has been involved in the protection or provision of consultancy with respect to trade marks in the most diverse sectors of industry, commerce and services. Among the most prominent, specific mention should be made of fashion, food, mechanics, textiles, software, games, chemistry, automotive, technical sports attire, and plant design, to name only a few.
LGV also assists clients in opposition procedures before the competent bodies (Italian Patent and Trade Mark Office, EUIPO) and manages these proceedings in several jurisdictions with the support of a solid and well established network of partners located in various countries. With regards to enforcement, LGV deals with anti-counterfeiting campaigns on a national level by means of the remedies regulated under the industrial property code as well as those available under the criminal law. Moreover, the experience of LGV extends to customs-related matters and to the procedures for the re-attribution of domain names, conflicts between commercial names and trademarks, conflicts between copyright and trademarks, and anything else that is connected to these intangible goods.
Moreover, LGV assists its clients in the preparation of contractual instruments for the efficient exploitation of marks and other distinctive signs. Particularly important in this regard are licensing, franchising, and distribution agreements, and, of course, all forms of acquisition, assignment or circulation of these types of assets.
COPYRIGHT AND NEW TECHNOLOGIES
The protection of copyright is undoubtedly one of the fields of specialization in which LGV has for the longest time excelled and for which it has gained recognition in international directories. Copyright as applied to new technologies constitutes one of the core practices at LGV.
The firm has dealt with all types of works originating in the digital and online world, and has become very highly specialized in the protection of software, video games, databases, collecting societies, and lobbies. LGV has obtained important decisions in favour of both rights owners (for example, with respect to infringements carried out via peer-to-peer, linking, and pirate websites), and users (for example, in relation to search engine activities).
Moreover, LGV has a solid experience in the most traditional sectors: from the organization of concerts and performances, to the production, transmission and distribution of audio-visual, cinematographic and television content; from the licensing of rights, in all sectors of creativity, to the redaction of publishing contracts, and the protection of editorial projects.
LGV is also specialized in the provision of institutional relations services, which are extremely important in a sector, such as that of copyright applied to new technologies, that is characterized by a high degree of legislative innovation. The firm guarantees its clients strategic consultancy with respect to the implementation of European Union rules and of national reforms related to current affairs (for example, issues connected to remuneration for private copies, protection measures, and the AGCOM regulation concerning protection of online copyright). LGV also assists its clients in the management of reports to the competent authorities, particularly AGCOM when dealing with online infringement.
Particularly with regard to software, the firm is recognized as one of the most highly competent organizers and managers of anti-counterfeiting campaigns in Italy. LGV is highly skilled in the use of a coordinated mix of all the most effective instruments – contentious and non-contentious – made available by the legal system.
Italy is one of the most important countries in the world in the field of design. Creativity in aesthetics is a typically Italian trait and for this reason design is attributed great importance in the consultancy services provided by LGV.
Protection of design intersects with rights grounded in competition and/or copyright, and even trademarks. For this reason it is vitally important for the client to interact with the IP experts of the firm who follow and supervise each single case. LGV is uniquely specialized in this branch of intellectual property. The firm collaborates with clients in deciding which type of registration is most appropriate or necessary in the case at hand (national, European, international, etc.) and assists them in identifying possible forms of protection that are alternative or additional to the ones just mentioned.
With regard to litigation, LGV has successfully followed numerous cases of infringement (both from an offensive and defensive standpoint), and has engaged in anti-counterfeiting campaigns for the protection of different types of industrial design. Additionally, the firm is constantly dealing with oppositions concerning registered designs which have been brought before the competent authorities.
Finally, LGV has managed several types of designs, including furniture products (such as chairs, tables, lamps, taps), bi-dimensional designs for textiles, bags, jewellery, and various types of ornamental objects.
Know-how has become increasingly more important in the world of IP. The law has now recognized know-how as equally deserving of protection in the same way as registered rights. Know-how is subject to forms of protection which in the past pertained exclusively to codified or registered IP rights. This constitutes a critically important form of protection for corporations operating in all sectors, although it is especially significant for those active in the chemical-pharmaceutical industry.
LGV assists its clients in the identification of confidential and financially sensitive information owned by the company, and also offers consultancy in the identification of systems used for the purpose of ensuring that such information remains secret from a legal and technical standpoint. Therefore, depending on the specific case, the most appropriate ways of ensuring protection of the asset are devised, together with the preparation of contractual instruments used for keeping the information secret within the corporation (vis-a-vis employees, consultants, etc.) as well as outside of it (with respect to suppliers or contractors). In this field, specific attention is given to the circulation of technical drawings depicting mechanical products, as well as chemical formulas, and other strategic information, all of which is now easily and uncontrollably transmitted via electronic mail. Great importance is also attributed to so-called commercial know-how belonging to the corporation (this is an issue that intersects with the protection of corporate databases and also matters involving software). In this context, LGV is also involved in the preparation of the necessary contractual arrangements with reference to licensing and agency relations.
LGV has assisted numerous clients and acquired considerable experience in the management of know-how issues which are often complex and require additional factual enquiries precisely because of the unregistered nature of this right.
ELECTRONIC COMMERCE, PRIVACY AND IT SECURITY
The management and regulation of systems of electronic commerce, privacy and IT security represents matters of great importance for any company. LGV has significant technical competences which have been developed as a result of its constant efforts to update and assist corporate clients.
In this sector the firm has for a long time assisted its clients in matters involving the negotiation and/or regulation of data processing, including those of a more complex and sensitive nature. LGV carries out checks (due diligence) of the existing situation before ensuring that everything is both technically and legally compliant. Specifically, in relation to legal compliance, LGV also manages security matters from a contractual and/or regulatory standpoint, with a focus on employees, collaborators, suppliers, clients, and any other type of subject involved in the process.
In litigation, LGV represents its clients in administrative and judicial disputes involving issues of confidentiality, security and management of data of various kinds and for different purposes.
Additionally, LGV deals with all aspects of extraterritoriality in relation to both European and non-European territories.
Moreover, LGV has developed significant experience in the most diverse sectors of electronic commerce, assisting clients in the contractual arrangement/management of different types of internet portals. In particular, reference should be made to production and management of content (third party, self-produced and/or user-generated); and, compliance checks with respect to information included in the website as well as contracts/informative reports for clients and/or third parties; etc.