Taking A Long-Term View On Russia's Patent Landscape

Law360 (June 6, 2022, 6:12 PM EDT) — Soniya ShahMing-Tao YangThe intellectual property community has faced momentous impacts on patent and other IP rights since Russia invaded Ukraine in March 2022. Before the invasion, Russia was a key forum for patent filings, with about 14,000 Russian patents granted to non-Russian applicants in 2019.[1]

But the sanctions by the U.S. and other countries following the invasion as well as the retaliatory, anti-patent enforcement measures by Russia are causing companies to reevaluate their short-term and long-term plans, while raising questions about the future of patent procurement and enforcement in Russia.

Government Sanctions and Impacts on IP

In March, Russia issued its Decree No. 299. The decree represented the first, significant impact on IP rights by zeroing out the enforcement value of certain Russian patents owned by entities and individuals in 48 countries. The affected patent owners in these countries get 0% compensation for patent infringement activities that occur in Russia, as long as the Russian government deems the patent infringement necessary for national security or for the protection of its citizens’ life and health.

Previously, Article 1360 of the Russian Civil Code authorized certain patent infringement to occur without the consent of the patent owner, but Article 1360 provided for compensation for the patent owner. Now, under Decree 299, “[u]sing an invention, utility model, or industrial design in the event of extreme necessity linked to the interests of national security” or for the “protection of citizens’ life and health”[2] can occur without prior license and

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