SEPs infringement and competition law defence in German case law
Giuseppe Colangelo University of Basilicata, Italy

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Andrea Aguggia University of Roma Tre, Italy

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Within the debate on the role of competition law in standard essential patents (SEPs) litigation, German case law has taken centre stage because of the number of decisions handed down and its traditional patent-owner-friendly approach. As the framework handed down by the European Court of Justice (CJEU) in Huawei is usually interpreted as being opposed to the approach adopted by the German Federal Court in the Orange Book Standard decision, it is worth investigating how German courts have tackled the competition law defence in the post-Huawei scenario. The article maintains that the Federal Court’s rulings in Einwand have aligned German case law with the Huawei framework and that the attention devoted in German case law to the implementer’s obligations is consistent with the principles set out by the CJEU. Nonetheless, recent lower courts’ decisions confirm that the case-by-case detection of the licensee’s willingness is still a challenging issue.

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