Newell Rubbermaid Luxembourg SARL, v. Vermop Salmon GmbH, District Court The Hague, 14 July 2010 Case No. / Docket No.: 367112 / KG ZA 10-677
During the ISSA Interclean fair Rubbermaid has presented a mop that allegedly infringes Vermop's European patent on a mop holder. Vermop has seized the mop during the fair. Rubbermaid requests a lift of the seizure in summary proceedings. Vermop has filed an amended set of claims one day before the hearing, which the court finds undesirable in the light of due process of law.
The court, under reference to case T 1067/99, finds that the amendments in the claims are features extracted from a preferred embodiment and these features had a clear functional relationship with other features of that embodiment. These features may therefore not be extracted from the other features of the preferred embodiment. Therefore the court rules that there is a real chance that the patent will be held invalid for added matter in a procedure on the merits and lifts the seizure because the amended claim cannot be the basis for a seizure.
Read the judgment (in Dutch) here.
Head note: Paul van Dongen