It may not be the Hague, but it may be the most talked about court in Germany right now! The Düsseldorf court in Germany has temporarily suspended their enforcement of the preliminary injunction prohibiting the distribution of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 throughout the EU except in Germany. Sales in Germany are still on hold based on additional claims by Apple that will not be decided on until September.
So what’s the whole story here…what’s really going on? Well, the initial injunction was filed against two companies: Samsung Electronics Company, Inc., and Samsung Electronics GmbH (the German subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co, Ltd.). Today’s announcement about the partial lift refers only to the parent company, who can now begin distribution of the Galaxy Tab throughout the EU except in Germany. It is likely that the injunction against the parent company will be completely lifted in the coming weeks which will have two major point of impact. Samsung will obviously see a lift in sales across the EU – if not globally due to the press, and Apple will obviously be further weakened as their claims crumble in court. It remains to be seen, however, just how much jurisdiction the German courts have over the Korea-based company, and this is suspected to be part of the reason for the partial –albeit temporary– lift in the enforcement of the injunction.
The commercial regulations set forth by the European Union are really the basis of the argument between the two parties at this point. in the English version of the regulations, it is apparent that for a complaint to be brought forth against a company or organization, that entity must have an “establishment” in the country that the complaint is filed, and that wholly-owned subsidiaries are not “establishments” because they remain separate legal entities. The German version of the regulations, however, does not differentiate between separate entities and wholly-owned subsidiaries, making it difficult to truly understand if there is any legal footing for Apple to file against Samsung Electronics GmbH (the subsidiary) in Germany. This should become more clear in the comings days as the fierce legal teams for both sides duke it out, but in the meantime Samsung aficionado in the EU can snatch up their Galaxy Tab.
via Foss Patents