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Korea: IP cases at Patent Court may be heard entirely in English

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According to a recent amendment of the "Court Organization Act", the Patent Court will establish an "International Litigation Chamber" in which IP cases may be heard entirely in English or other foreign languages. The new regulation stipulates that Non-Korean parties may submit court briefs, arguments or oral arguments in English without the burden of providing a Korean translation as well.

The Patent Court is the court of second instance for decisions rendered by the Intellectual Property Trial and Appeal Board with regard to appeals against a decision of rejection, invalidation trials, opposition proceedings and other cases. Since 2016, it is also the court of second instance for patent infringement cases which were initiated at one of the five Central District Courts.

In about 40% of all cases at the Patent Court, there is at least one foreign party involved. The new regulations shall improve foreign parties' accessibility to court proceedings. The amended law is expected to enter into force in summer 2018.

Links to a short overview on most important features of the new international litigation chamber and the complete text of the amended Court Organization Act (both in Korean only).

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