15 Jul
2021

Analysing the first year of the Polish IP courts

Co-published

On 1 July 2020 Polish IP practitioners welcomed the opening of the country’s first IP courts. The need to create IP courts with IP experts as judges had been raised by professionals in the field for many years, due to the complexity of IP matters and the rising number and specific character of IP proceedings.

Here, the district courts of Gdańsk, Katowice, Lublin, Poznań and Warsaw provide information on the number of cases filed, their subject matter and new procedural measures such as the motion to secure evidence, the request to disclose or release evidence, and information requests.

Quantity of IP cases

As of 22 June, 1,024 IP cases had been filed before the District Court of Warsaw. In second place was the District Court of Katowice with 638 cases, followed by Poznań with 535 cases and Lublin with 197. Gdańsk provided information from the second half of 2020 only, during which time 126 cases were filed.

Subject matter

Before assessing the following data, it is worth noting that the figures presented below may not represent the exact number of the cases concerning copyright, trademarks or industrial designs, as only one type of IP right is assigned to each case, even though most disputes concern multiple IP rights.

Table 1: Cases in Warsaw

Subject matter

Number of cases

Copyright

101

Trademarks

10

Industrial designs

6

Patents

12

Plant variety

3

There were no cases concerning utility models or semiconductors in Warsaw. The disproportion between the overall number of cases and what has been presented above derives from the fact that in 2020 most cases in the department (229) concerned remuneration for the use of IP rights. No information was provided on this for 2021.

Table 2. Cases in Katowice

Subject matter

Number of cases

Copyright

510

Trademarks

16

Industrial designs

2

Table 3. Cases in Poznań

Subject matter

Number of cases

Copyright

41

Trademarks

14

Industrial designs

7

In Poznań, as in Warsaw, most of the 315 cases concerned remuneration for the use of IP rights.

Table 4. Cases in Lublin

Subject matter

Number of cases

Copyright

35

Trademarks

13

Industrial designs

5

 

Table 5. Cases in Gdańsk (2020 only)

Subject matter

Number of cases

Copyright

64

Trademarks

9

Industrial designs

3

Securing claims

  • Warsaw – 1,038 decisions were issued on the security of claims, with 598 accepting the motion.
  • Katowice – 52 motions were filed, 18 of which were accepted.
  • Poznań – 44 motions were filed, 16 of which were accepted.
  • Lublin – 30 motions were filed, 28 of which were accepted.
  • Gdańsk – 12 motions were filed in 2020; however, there is no data on the acceptance rate.

Average time from filing a motion to issuing a decision

According to the law, the court has seven days to hand down its decision. However, not every court can comply with this. The average time in Katowice was 20 days and in Poznań between six and seven days.

The average time to issue a decision in Lublin was eight days. The district courts in Gdańsk and Warsaw provided no information on their time frames.

Motion to secure evidence

A motion to secure evidence assures that rights holders can gain information on the infringement of their rights. In Warsaw, 13 motions were filed and only one has been accepted so far. In Katowice, four motions were filed and four decisions were issued. In Poznań, three motions were filed, while in Lublin, no such motions were filed. In Gdańsk, there were two motions in 2020, one of which was accepted.

Request to disclose or release evidence

A request to disclose or release evidence allows rights holders to obtain evidence from an infringer about the case requirements that is impossible to legally obtain outside of court proceedings.

In Katowice, there were nine requests and four decisions issued. In Poznań, there were five requests. In Gdańsk and Lublin, no such motions were filed. The District Court of Warsaw did not provide an answer.

Information requests

Through an information request, rights holders can obtain information on parties that cooperated with a defendant and the quantity and prices of counterfeit products.

In Warsaw, there were 16 such requests, five of which were accepted. In Katowice, there were 12 requests and the court issued five decisions. In Poznań, there were five requests, but some also appeared in lawsuits and motions to secure the claim. In Lublin, there were nine, and in Gdańsk, there were none.

Table 6. Number of cases resolved throughout the year

District court

Number of cases resolved

Warsaw

649

Katowice

369

Poznań

283

Lublin  

139

Gdańsk (in 2020)

54

Second-instance decisions

The courts of appeal were also contacted to verify their workloads in the first year of the IP courts being established. As of 16 June, 95 cases were filed before the Warsaw Court of Appeal and 67 were filed before the Poznań Court of Appeal.

For further information contact:

Klaudia Błach-Morysińska
Zaborski, Morysiński
View website

Paweł Poznański
Zaborski, Morysiński
View website

This is a co-published article whose content has not been commissioned or written by the WTR editorial team, but which has been proofed and edited to run in accordance with the WTR style guide.

TAGS

Europe, Poland